This footage – seen five million times in just over 24 hours – shows the remains of a light training aircraft which Chinese officials say plummeted to the ground after its wings froze during a training flight.
The craft operating by Hainan Aviation Academy was piloted by an instructor and two trainees, all of whom lost their lives during the crash on 13th January, officials have confirmed.
A search and rescue party discovered the wreckage in the mountains in Huoshaoping, a township in the city of Yichang in Central China’s Hubei Province, at 3:20pm local time.
Video Credit: AsiaWire
Officials reported two of the victims’ bodies still inside the plane fuselage, while the third had been ejected during the crash.
According to reports, the plane is believed to be a propeller-driven, four-seater, twin-engine Diamond DA42, built by Austrian Diamond Aircraft Industries.
The local Emergency Management Office said the aircraft lost contact with ground control while returning from its training flight.
The wings of the aircraft are believed to have frozen solid while flying over a region with an average elevation of 1,800 metres (5,900 feet), before the plane plummeted to the ground.
Hainan Aviation Academy, a subsidiary of the HNA Group, expressed its condolences to the victims’ families, and said it was cooperating in an ongoing investigation by aviation authorities.
At the time of writing, the hashtag ‘Hubei training craft crashes killing 3’ had been viewed more than 120 million times on Weibo, often referred to as Chinese Twitter.
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