By News Agencies

An Antonov 26 plane belonging to Optimum Aviation has crashed on Tuesday morning after takeoff from the Juba International Airport.

The plane according to reports from Juba was en route to Maban from the Juba International Airport before it crashed. 

Airport authorities in Juba say they are still investigating the cause of the crash.

The Director-General for Juba International Airport Kur Kuol told Radio Tamazuj: “It is a technical problem actually in which I can not explain right now, but it is confirmed Antonov 26 belonging to Optimum Aviation, it was taking off from Juba International Airport heading to Maban. No casualties are confirmed even though the passengers were not there but crews were there.”

When contacted for an interview an official at Optimum Aviation declined to give a statement saying they are yet to establish facts as to why the plane crashed.

The official said a team of engineers has been dispatched to the scene to assess the cause of the accident. It is not clear how many crew members were on the plane at the time of the crash.

Several planes have crashed in recent years in South Sudan.

On 2 March 2021, a Let L-410 Turbolet of South Sudan Supreme Airlines crashed in Pieri, Uror County on a domestic flight to Yuai Airstrip, South Sudan.

In August 2020, eight people lost their lives, while a single passenger survived with injuries when a cargo plane crashed into a farm in the Kemeru area minutes after it took off from the Juba International Airport.

In 2015, 36 people were killed when a Soviet-era Antonov plane crashed just after takeoff from Juba.

In 2017, 37 people had a miraculous escape after their plane hit a fire truck on a runway in Wau before bursting into flames.

19 people were killed in 2018 when a small aircraft carrying passengers from Juba to Yirol crashed.