Colombia plane crash: Jet ran out of fuel, pilot said

The pilot of LAMIA Flight 2933, which crashed near Medellin, Colombia, said, “The plane is in total electric failure and without fuel,” according to two sources familiar with the investigation who heard audio recordings of conversations between the flight crew and air traffic control. The pilot repeatedly asked for permission to land because of “total electric failure” and a lack of fuel, before slamming into a mountain Monday during the flight from Santa Cruz, Bolivia, to Medellin, Colombia, according to the recording leaked to several Colombian media outlets.

The audio was published in Colombian media. The crash killed at least 71 people during a charter flight to Medellin, including members of the Brazilian Chapecoense soccer squad on its way to the Copa Sudamericana finals. Three players, two crew members and one journalist survived, Colombian authorities said.

A Bolivian flight attendant who survived the crash, Ximena Sanchez, told rescuers the plane had run out of fuel moments before the crash. Investigators were expected to interview her on Wednesday at the clinic near Medellin where she is recovering.

“’We ran out of fuel. The airplane turned off,’” Sanchez told Arquimedes Mejia, who helped pull the flight attendant from the wreckage. “That was the only thing she told me,” he told The Associated Press in an interview.