Air Algerie plane disappears from radar

LONDON (CNN) — An Air Algerie flight, with 116 people on board, has dropped off radar, prompting a search for the missing plane, the airline’s operator said Thursday.

Flight 5017 lost radar contact 50 minutes after takeoff from Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, early Thursday. It was supposed to have arrived at Algiers’ Houari Boumediene Airport about four hours later.

The plane, an MD-83, is carrying 110 passengers, two pilots and four crew members. The MD-83 is part of the McDonnell Douglas MD-80 family of twin-engine, single-aisle jets.

A private Spanish company, Swiftair, operates the plane for Air Algerie.

“We have lost contact with the plane,” Swiftair said.

“At this moment, emergency services and our staff are working on finding out more on this situation.”

Air Algerie is Algeria’s national airline, with flights to 28 countries.

The deadliest incident in the airline’s history occurred on in March 2003 when a domestic fight crashed after takeoff, killing 102 people on board. One person survived.

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