An ACT Airlines Boeing 747-400 Freighter operating under MyCargo Airlines has crashed near Kyrgyzstan’s Manas Airport today at 7.31am (local time), reportedly killing at least 37 people.
Reports claim most of them residents of a village struck by the B747F as it tried to land in dense fog, crashing through the village and damaging 15 buildings.
According to the airport, the aircraft was supposed to make a stopover at Manas, near the capital city Bishkek, on its way from Hong Kong to Istanbul.
Initial estimates put the death toll from the crash at 37, according to Kyrgyzstan’s emergencies ministry.
ACT Airlines, a Turkey-based carrier, released this statement: “Respectfully announced to the public. ACT Airlines is deeply saddened to report that an accident happened during the flight from Hong Kong to Bishkek by Boeing 747-400 TC-MCL registered cargo aircraft at 01:20.
“The cause of the accident is unknown at this time and further details will be provided as they become available.”
There are reports the freighter was being operated on behalf of Turkish Cargo, but this has not been confirmed.
On its Twitter account, the carrier’s passenger arm Turkish Airlines tweeted: “Please kindly be informed that neither the aircraft nor the crew are members of Turkish Airlines.”
In another tweet the airline says: “Our condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives in the tragic incident involving an ACT Airlines aircraft in Kyrgyzstan.”
MyCargo was rebranded from ACT Airlines after in 2011, the HNA Group bought 49 per cent of the shares of ACT Airlines, leaving 50.9 per cent of the shares with Daglar Cizmeci and 0.9 per cent with other Turkish holders.