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(LEAD) Military plane crash near Andong

2016/02/04 14:51

(ATTN: UPDATES with more info; CHANGES headline, slug; Minor edits)

ANDONG, South Korea, Feb. 4 (Yonhap) -- A military aircraft crashed into a river near Andong on South Korea's southeastern coast, local authorities said Thursday.

Rescue teams and firefighters said that two crew members of the stricken plane escaped and are safe.

The T-11 biplane crashed around 12:05 p.m. near the Gyeongbuk Institute for Bio-industry. The crash was only a few hundred meters away from a village.

The two air force pilots were on their way back to the base in Chungju, North Chungcheong Province, after flight duty, according to authorities.

The ill-fated plane was not critically damaged and there was no fuel spill due to the emergency landing, authorities said.

They said engine problems may have caused the plane to fall from the sky, although the exact reason for the mishap needs to be identified.

In June 2015, the same type of aircraft made an emergency landing in Okcheon, North Chungcheong Province, some 174 kilometers south of Seoul. Out of three crew members, one was wounded in the leg and rushed to a nearby hospital.