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Central American Airways Flight 731

Central American Airways Flight 731
HR-AUQ seen at Toncontín International Airport (January 2010)
Accident summary
Date February 14, 2011
Summary Under investigation/Controlled flight into terrain
Site Santa Ana, Francisco Morazán Department, Honduras
Passengers 12
Crew 2
Fatalities 14 (all)
Survivors 0
Aircraft type Let L-410 Turbolet
Operator Central American Airlines
Registration HR-AUQ
Flight origin Ramón Villeda Morales International Airport, San Pedro Sula, Honduras
Destination Toncontín International Airport, Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Central American Airways Flight 731 was a passenger flight which crashed on approach to Toncontín International Airport, Tegucigalpa, Honduras, on February 14, 2011. All 14 aboard died. The aircraft involved, a Let L-410 Turbolet, was operating Central American Airlines' scheduled domestic service from Ramón Villeda Morales International Airport, San Pedro Sula.[1]

The crash occurred just before 9am. The weather in the area was reportedly poor at the time of the crash.[2][3] The location of the crash was El Espino, Jurisdicción de Santa Ana, Francisco Morazán Department.[4]

Among the dead were Rodolfo Rovelo, Honduran Assistant Secretary for Public Works, and Jose Israel Salinas, leader of the United Workers Federation of Honduras, Plutarco Molina Castellanos, CEO of Constructora William - Molina .[5] Former Finance Secretary Carlos Chahín was also on board.[6] Additionally, two Americans and one Canadian are believed to have been aboard the plane.[7] In response to the incident, the government of Honduras declared three days of national mourning for the deceased government officials.[7]

In response to the crash, the Honduran government said it would undertake an investigation into the incident, and rescuers began searching for the aircraft's flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder soon after it crashed.[8] The head of the investigation stated that because the aircraft was European, and not American, it created difficulties as there were very few experienced local pilots and technicians trained to operate on the aircraft.[9]

The accident raised questions about the safety and relocation of the Tegucigalpa Airport.[10][11] The President of Honduras called for the airport to be relocated, stating that it was impossible to have a major airport in its current location due to the surrounding terrain.[12]


The aircraft involved in the accident was a Let L-410UVP-E20 Turbolet, registration HR-AUQ, serial number 912603. It first flew in 1991, and served with a number of airlines before the accident.[3]


  1. ^ "Honduras: accidente aéreo deja 14 muertos y ningún sobreviviente" (in Spanish). Infosur. February 15, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Crash: Central American Airways L410 near Tegucigalpa on Feb 14th 2011, impacted trees on approach". Retrieved February 17, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b "ASN Aircraft accident Let L-410UVP-E20 HR-AUQ Cerro de Hula". Retrieved February 17, 2011. 
  4. ^ "DGAC-ACCID-01-2011, CENTRAL AMERICAN AIRWAYS, MATRICULA HR-AUQ" (Archive) Dirección General de Aeronáutica Civil. p. 2/21 (INTRODUCCION [sic]). "El accidente ocurrió en El Espino, Jurisdicción de Santa Ana, Francisco Morazán."
  5. ^ Associated Press (February 14, 2011). "Small Commercial Plane Crash Kills 14 In Honduras".  
  6. ^ "Honduras vice-minister Robelo among 14 plane crash dead". BBC News. February 14, 2011. Retrieved February 14, 2011. 
  7. ^ a b "Canadian believed to be on Honduras plane that crashed". CTV Toronto. Associated Press. February 15, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  8. ^ "L-410 crashes in Honduras". Flight International. February 15, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  9. ^ Bustillo, Yony (February 16, 2011). "Clima y factor humano, entre las causas del accidente aéreo en Las Mesitas". La Tribuna. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Vuelve a sonar Palmerola para aeropuerto". El Heraldo. February 14, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Aeropuerto". La Tribuna. February 16, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  12. ^ Pepe" Lobo: Hay que sacar aeropuerto de Tegucigalpa""". El Heraldo. February 15, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 

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