HAVANA (AP) – The only three survivors of Cuba’s worst aviation disaster in three decades were clinging to life Saturday, a day after their passenger jet crashed in a fireball in Havana’s rural outskirts with 113 people on board. In the first official death toll provided by authorities, Transportation Minister Adel Yzquierdo Rodriguez said 110 had died, including five children.
He also announced that a flight recorder from the plane had been located. Carlos Alberto Martinez, director of Havana’s Calixto Garcia Hospital where the survivors were being treated, said doctors are always hopeful that their patients will recover, but he acknowledged that the three Cuban women were in extremely grave condition.
“We must be conscious that they present severe injuries,” Martinez told a small group of journalists. “They are in a critical state.” Cuban officials identified the women as Mailen Diaz, 19, of Holguin; Grettel Landrove, 23, of Havana; and Emiley Sanchez, 39, of Holguin. Martinez said Sanchez was conscious and communicating, Diaz was conscious and sedated, and Landrove was in a coma.