An Ethiopian Airlines jet crashed shortly after taking off from Addis Ababa, killing all 157 people on board, including one Irish passenger.
Here is what we know so far:
- The cockpit voice recorder and black box from the crashed Ethiopian Airlines plane has been recovered, the country's state-affiliated broadcaster reported.
– The Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed around Bishoftu, or Debre Zeit, some 31 miles (50km) south of the Ethiopian capital, shortly after taking off at 8.38am local time on Sunday.
– There were 149 passengers and eight crew on board flight ET302 which was heading for Nairobi, Kenya. There were no survivors.
– The victims comprised more than 35 nationalities, the majority of whom were from Kenya, Canada, Ethiopia, China, Italy, the US, France, the UK, Egypt and Germany.
– Among them were United Nations workers Michael Ryan, a father-of-two who had lived in Lahinch in Co Clare, and Joanna Toole, 36, from England. Joseph Waithaka, a 55-year-old who lived in the UK for a decade before moving back to his native Kenya, also died in the crash.
– Early indications showed that 19 employees of UN-affiliated organisations were killed, with its environmental forum due to start in Nairobi today.
– The cause of the disaster is yet to be determined; however, it has already had a wider impact on operations of Boeing’s 737 Max 8, one of which was involved in another deadly crash less than five months ago.
– Ethiopian Airlines said it has grounded all of its Max 8 aircraft as an “extra safety precaution”.
– All Chinese airlines have suspended operations involving the Max 8 on the orders of the country’s civil aviation authority.
– Cayman Airways, which operates two Max 8s in the Caribbean, has also suspended operations to maintain “complete and undoubtable safe operations”.
– Records show that Ethiopian Airlines took delivery of its doomed aircraft as recently as November.
– The plane had flown from Johannesburg to Addis Ababa earlier on Sunday morning, and previously underwent “rigorous” testing on February 4, according to the airline.
– Minutes into the flight the pilot sent out a distress call and was given clearance to return, according to Ethiopian Airlines chief executive Tewolde Gebremariam.
– An eyewitness said there an intense fire when the plane crashed and “everything is burnt down”.
- Press Association