PICTURES: LAB reveals details about Boeing 727 crash landing

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Fuel starvation has emerged as a possible cause of an accident involving a Lloyd Aereo Boliviano-operated (LAB) Boeing 727-200, which was severely damaged during an emergency landing in a jungle clearing on 1 February.

The flight, from La Paz to Cobija in Northern Bolivia, was operated by LAB as a charter on behalf of the Bolivian military owned civil airline TAM (Transportes Aereos Militares).

A LAB source says the accident was caused “almost for sure because of fuel starvation”. The source says the aircraft “ran out of fuel” after thunderstorms prevented the aircraft from landing at Cobija as well as its official alternate, Rio Branco in Brazil, which was also suffering unsafe weather conditions.

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The source says the aircraft, identified as a 1980-build Boeing 727-200, registered CP-2429, was forced to perform the emergency landing in low jungle land as it tried to approach Trinidad airport in central Bolivia. It landed 5km short of Trinidad’s runway.

None of the 159 passengers and crew on board was seriously hurt, although the source says the aircraft was severely damaged with its “wings and the lateral engines torn off from the fuselage”. Flight’s ACAS database lists the aircraft owner as Chicago-based Residco, which specialises in the sale, lease and finance of transportation equipment.

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LAB hopes to recertify itself as a scheduled carrier later this month after bankruptcy forced its grounding last April. Since the end of 2007 it has resumed charter flights, through which it hopes to be re-authorised as a scheduled carrier.

Source:'s sister premium news site Air Transport Intelligence news