Remembering 2014's airplane disasters
On Sunday morning, AirAsia Flight QZ8501 disappeared from radar over the Java Sea en route to Singapore. The incident is the latest in a series of airplane accidents in 2014 - not all have been fully investigated.
No radio contact
The AirAsia Airbus was on its way from Surabaya, on the Indonesian island of Java, to Singapore. About 40 minutes after takeoff early Sunday morning, air traffic control lost radio contact with the airplane. Since that time, Flight QZ8501 has been missing; search and rescue operations are underway. One hundred sixty-two people were onboard.
The loss of AirAsia Flight QZ8501 has brought back memories of the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. On March 8, Flight MH370 disappeared while traveling between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing. After one last routine radio message, the plane disappeared from radar screens. Aviation experts believe it probably crashed hours later in the Indian Ocean when it ran out of fuel.
What happened on board Flight MH370 remains one of the biggest mysteries in aviation history. Was there a technical problem? Did hijackers take over the airplane? Or did the pilot commit suicide, dooming everyone onboard? The search for the missing Boeing 777 has been going on for months - even the New Zealand military, seen here, has taken part.
On July 17, another Boeing 777 in the Malaysia Airlines fleet crashed, allegedly shot down over disputed territory in eastern Ukraine. All 298 people onboard Flight MH17 were killed. The plane was on its way from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.
It wasn't until five days after the crash that rebels handed over the flight data Recorder. To date there were numerous indications that Flight MH17 was hit by a surface-to-air missile. Whether rebels were responsible, or whether it was Russian or Ukrainian troops that shot down the plane - possibly by accident - is still not known. The recovery of bodies and debris continued for months.
Requested course change
On July 24, a plane leased by Air Algerie from the Spanish company Swiftair dropped out of the sky over the West African country of Mali, killing 116 people. The MD-83 was en route from Ouagadougou, in Burkina Faso, to Algiers. As in the AirAsia incident, the Air Algerie pilot asked shortly after takeoff for permission to change course due to a local storm.
Smashed to pieces
The jet apparently fell into a tailspin before colliding with the ground at high speed. The debris field was found in the Gossi region, near the border with Burkina Faso. A storm front was probably responsible for the crash.
On June 23, a plane crashed during a Bundeswehr training exercise in Germany's Sauerland region. A Eurofighter with the German air force collided with a Learjet in a midair maneuver which sent the latter crashing to the ground. The Eurofighter was severely damaged in the collision, which ripped off one of its turbines but managed to land safely.
Crash in residential area
A plane crashed in August after take-off from Tehran's Mehrabad Airport and went down in a residential area after an engine failure. Officials said some 48 people were aboard the Iran-140 plane.
Taiwanese plane goes down over Penghu
47 of 54 people on board were killed when a turboprop ATR Model 72 crashed on one of the Penghu Islands, also known as the Pescadores, off Taiwan's coast. Eleven People were injured. The plane went down during an attempted emergency landing in stormy weather. TransAsia Airways flies mostly domestic routes, but also has Japan, Thailand and Cambodia among its destinations.
Brazil: Presidential candidate dies in plane crash
In mid-August Brazilian presidential candidate Eduardo Campos died when his private Cessna plane crashed near Sao Paolo attempting to land in bad weather. Just weeks ahead of October's election all seven people aboard the plane, including a campaign photographer and cameraman, as well as a press advisor, died.