Bogota - Colombian aviation authorities said on Monday that an airliner that
crashed with a Brazilian soccer team aboard had run out of fuel before
it could land.
Seventy-one people died in the November 28 accident.
statement by the Civil Aeronautics agency said the conclusion was based
on the plane's black boxes and other evidence.
It said the evidence
points to human error rather than technical problems or sabotage.
had earlier suggested that fuel exhaustion was a likely cause of the
crash that wiped out all but a few members of the Chapecoense soccer
team, as well as team officials and journalists accompanying them to a
championship playoff match in Medellin, Colombia.
The BAE 146 Avro
RJ85 has a maximum range was 2 965km (1 600 nautical miles) -
just under the distance between Medellin and Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where
the plane had taken off at almost full capacity.
The plane was in
the air for about 4 hours and 20 minutes when air traffic controllers in
Medellin put it into a holding pattern because another flight had
reported a suspected fuel leak and was given priority.
recording of a radio message from the pilot of the LaMia flight, he can
be heard repeatedly requesting permission to land due to a lack of fuel
and a "total electric failure."
A surviving flight attendant and a pilot flying nearby also overheard the frantic pleas from the doomed airliner.
In addition, there was no explosion upon impact, pointing to a scarcity of fuel.