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Plane crash kills 51 people

A plane making a second landing attempt in stormy weather crashed at an airport on a small Taiwanese island late Wednesday, killing 51 people and injuring seven, fire officials said.

Taiwan was battered by Typhoon Matmo early Tuesday morning, and the Central Weather Bureau was advising of heavy rain through the evening, even though the centre of the storm was in mainland China.

The flight was heading from the capital, Taipei, to the island Penghu, halfway between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan in the Taiwan Strait. Pictures from the airport showed a handful of firefighters using flashlights to look at wreckage in the darkness.

Penghu is a lightly populated island that averages about two flights a day from Taipei.

Taiwan's Central News Agency cites the Civil Aviation Administration as saying the flight carried 54 passengers and four flight crew and was operated by a Taiwanese airline, TransAsia Airways.

The Canadian Press

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