Islamabad Jun 1 (efe-epa).- A 12-year-old Pakistani girl died on Monday due to injuries she suffered after a passenger plane crashed into her neighborhood in the city of Karachi on May 22, marking the first on-ground casualty in an accident that killed 97 people onboard.
“Naheeda Bibi succumbed to her injuries today,” Rubina Bashir, the superintendent of Karachi Civil Hospital, told EFE.
The doctor said Bibi worked as a domestic cleaner at a house that was hit by the Pakistan International Airlines passenger jet as it crashed during a second landing attempt at the Karachi airport.
“She had 59 percent burns on her body and was critical for the last two days. She also had breathing problems. The cause of the death was a cardiac-pulmonary failure,” Bashir said.
Meeran Yusuf, the spokesperson of the health department in the Sindh province, confirmed to EFE that the girl was the first on-ground victim of the crash as all the other deceased had been passengers or crew members.
Out of the total 99 people onboard the A-320 jet, two passengers survived the crash, while the rest – including eight crew members – were killed in one of the worst air accidents in the country in recent years.
Yusuf said that 84 bodies had been identified so far, 45 of them using DNA tests and others with the help of families.
The remaining 13 corpses are being kept in city morgues pending identification process.
The plane burst into flames after crashing in its second landing attempt, having first hit the runway with its fuselage, a fact confirmed by the marks left on the ground, Pakistan’s Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan said.
Investigations into the crash are underway with an Airbus team arriving on the ground, and the government is expected to release a preliminary report by the end of June.
The PIA flight was carrying people returning home to celebrate the Muslim festival Eid-al-Fitr – which comes at the end of the holy month of Ramadan – and occurred just as domestic flights were resumed after being suspended for weeks due to the nationwide coronavirus lockdown.
Pakistan is no stranger to plane crashes and suffered one of its worst air tragedies in 2010 when 152 people died in an air accident near Islamabad. Two years later, another plane crash near the capital killed 138 people. EFE-EPA