Plane Carrying 32 Crashes in Papua New Guinea

Posted October 13th, 2011 at 11:35 am (UTC-5)
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A passenger plane with 32 people on board crashed Thursday in a remote northern area of the Pacific island nation of Papua New Guinea. There were early witness reports of four survivors.

Aviation officials say the Airlines PNG twin propeller plane was flying from the mountain gateway city of Lae to coastal Madang when it crashed in a heavily forested area near Madang Wednesday evening .

A spokesman for Papua's Accident Investigation Commission said there had been forecasts of bad weather in the region. But he could not immediately confirm reports of a violent storm at the time of the crash.

Local media said most of the passengers were thought to be families of local university students who were traveling to weekend graduation ceremonies in Madang.

The cause of the crash was not immediately known.