Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Airline Crash in Libya Kills 103

An Afriqiyah Airways A330-200 crashed in Libya, killing 103 on board during landing at Tripoli. A 10 year old boy survived.

Here is the Wikipedia entry on Afriqiyah Airways, which is based in Libya.

Here is the Afriqiyah Airways notice on the crash.

This is the second fatal crash of an Airbus A330-200 within a year. Last June, an Air France A330 bound from Rio de Janeiro to Paris crashed in the Atlantic, killing 228.

It's great that a child survived today's crash -- but news accounts that focus on the "miracle" of the survivor (how I hate that word, having once survived an air crash that killed 154) and not on the central catastrophe represent the continuing trivialization of journalism that has been wrought by cable news, it seems to me.


1 comment:

Jerry said...

The focus on one survivor, while, as you say, misguided, is not a new phenomenon. I was a young man in Brooklyn in 1960 when planes from United and TWA collided killing 134, but leaving an 11 year old boy as an initial survivor. There was much coverage about the "miracle" of his success. Everything wrong about journalism can't be blamed on cable.

Here's what the NY Times said:

One boy was found alive in the snow in Park Slope: Stephen Baltz of Wilmette, Ill., a suburb of Chicago. He had been flying alone; his parents rushed to his bedside, The Times reported:

“This was his first excursion alone,” Mr. Baltz told doctors. … He said his son had tried to smile but could not.

“We are grateful to the Almighty for this miraculous thing that has happened to our son and we have heartfelt sympathy for all those who are not as fortunate as we are,” Mr. Baltz said.

The boy’s face was covered with medication for the burns suffered in the crash, and his left leg was broken. The burns also were on his chest, left arm and back.

Churchgoers on that Friday night, during the Christmas season, carried newspapers with Stephen’s picture and prayed for him. Calls flooded the hospital from New Yorkers offering their blood for transfusions for the boy. Throughout the night, the nurse at his bedside would later remember, he would wake up and speak, sounding healthy.

In the end, Stephen was too badly burned to survive. He remained the crash’s sole survivor for only a night, dying at 10 a.m. Saturday morning. But for that one night, he was the source of hope for a city where two planes had gone down.