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Plane Crashes in Switzerland

November 24, 2001

ZURICH, Switzerland (AP) _ A Crossair airliner carrying 32 people crashed Saturday evening on its approach to Zurich Airport, officials said. Local police said at least seven people were killed and that some nine others were injured.

There were reports of rain and intermittent snow in the area, and police official Hans Baltenberger said on Swiss television that the survivors were found in a forested area near the airport.

On board were 27 passengers and five crew members, said Manfred Winkler, spokesman for Crossair, a subsidiary of the financially troubled Swissair Group.

The flight from Berlin’s Tegel airport to Zurich crashed as it was trying to land, said airport spokesman Christof Diener. It was just after 10 p.m.

``The first reports spoke of a fireball in a wooded area. We can assume there was a strong fire,″ Zurich police spokesman Karl Steiner told German television. He said the crash happened in Birchwil, about 2 miles east of the airport.

A Jumbolino, also known as an Avro RJ, is a small, four-engine jetliner that Crossair flies in two versions, one with 82 passenger seats and the other with 97.

Crossair flies routes between Swiss cities and to other destinations in Europe. It is taking over parts of the Swissair operations in a complicated, government-financed bailout that is meant to be completed next spring.

Update hourly