On 4 October 1992, El Al Flight 1862, a Boeing 747 cargo aircraft of the state-owned Israeli airline El Al, crashed into the Groeneveen and Klein-Kruitberg flats in the Bijlmermeer neighbourhood of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. From the location in the Bijlmermeer, the crash is known in Dutch as the Bijlmerramp (Bijlmer disaster).
A total of 43 people were officially reported killed, including the aircraft’s three crew members, a non-revenue passenger in a jump seat, and 39 people on the ground. In addition to these fatalities, 11 people were seriously injured and 15 people received minor injuries. The exact number of people killed on the ground is in dispute, as the building had a high concentration of illegal immigrants.
Flight 1862 was scheduled to depart at 5:30 pm, but was delayed until 6:20 pm. It departed from runway 01L (today known as runway 36C) on a northerly heading at 6:22 pm. Once airborne, the aircraft turned to the right on its departure route. Soon after the turn, at 6:27 pm, above the Gooimeer, a lake near Amsterdam, witnesses on the ground heard a sharp bang while the aircraft was climbing through 1950 meters (6500 feet). The bang was the result of the two fuse pins attaching engine three to the right wing failing due to microscopic fatigue cracks. The engine separated from the right wing of the aircraft, shot forward, damaged the wing flaps, then fell back and struck engine number four, tearing it from the wing. The two engines fell away from the aircraft, also ripping out a 9-meter (30-foot) stretch of the wing’s leading edge. The loud noise attracted the attention of some pleasure boaters on Gooimeer. The boaters notified the Netherlands Coastguard of two objects they had seen falling from the sky. One boater, a police officer, said he initially thought the two falling objects were parachutists, but as they fell closer he could see they were both plane engines.
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