URUMQI, May 18(Xinhuanet)-- The pilot of the cargo plane that crashed into a farm near the Urumqi international airport in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on Tuesday obviously tried an emergency landing but failed, witnesses said.
Ma Guijun, a farmer at Sanping Farm, said he and three others saw the plane crash into the farmland two km away from the airport,slide to the rear part of the house of Ma Jianjun, a local farmer, and plough into his fodder pond there.
Ma Yuelan, a taxi driver who was driving on the highway at the time of the accident, said the plane seemed to be looking for an open space for landing.
"The plane touched down in a cotton field but kept sliding, with its fuselage resting on one side and its left wing poking into the earth," said the taxi driver."I believe the plane fell apart in the course of sliding. And the site was strewn with planeparts and cargo from the plane."
Zhang Yuping, wife of Ma Jianjun, was doing household chores atthe time of the accident. When she heard the deafening explosion, she thought it might be an accident on a highway in front of her home.
"Nothing happened on the highway, but when I turned round and looked out of the back window, I was stunned to see a big plane hovering toward me and I thought that was the end of my life," Zhang recalled.
"However, the plane swirled and came to a stop before it reached the house," she said.
Soon rescue workers arrived.
Rescue operations are going on despite strong winds.