Cuban 737 crash claims 107 lives

May 19, 2018
Cuban 737 crash
Cuban 737 crash with over 100 feared dead. Credit Luna.

There has been a crash of a 39-year-old Boeing 737 in Cuba claiming 107 lives.

A Global Aerolineas Damojh Boeing 737-200, registration XA-UHZ, operating on behalf of Cubana de Aviacion, performing flight CU-972 from Havanna to Holguin in Cuba with 104 passengers and 9 crew, crashed just after take-off.

According to Aviation Herald, the 737 lost height shortly after takeoff at 12:08L (16:08Z) and burst into flames.

Three passengers were taken to hospitals in critical condition and are understood to be the only survivors.

According to CNN In the last few weeks that Cubana de Avicion, Cuba’s national carrier, had to ground a number of their aging fleet because they said there were safety issues, though the cause of this crash is not known.

It is believed the plane was almost 39 years old and had serial number 21816 LN:592 and first flew on the 15th of July 1979 and was delivered to Piedmont airlines in the US.

The Boeing 737 is the workhorse of the airline system.

WATCH: Spectacular cross-wind landings. 

Boeing started studies of a short-haul jet plane to supplement the company’s very successful 727 for short routes.


Design work began in May 1964, with the original design for a 60-passenger plane for routes up to 1600km.

Many at the time in Boeing thought the move was crazy because three other competitors already had similar jets flying or about to fly and there were few major customers left.

But Boeing had a major advantage with its family concept as its 737 would use many of the parts and the same cabin cross-section (six across) as its best-selling 707 and 727.

Boeing’s sales pitch was big-jet comfort on regional routes.

Germany’s Lufthansa and United Airlines were sold and the 737 was launched.

There is possibly a no better example of how engine and aerodynamic technology has advanced aviation than the 737.

The first 737 could carry 124 passengers over 2775km, whereas the latest version,  the 737MAX 9 can carry 204 passengers in the same configuration over 7000km. And the fuel consumption improvements have been spectacular.

Since 2000, for instance, the fuel burn has declined 20 percent from the current model in airline service to the MAX.

As well as countless under-the-skin improvements, Boeing has given the 737 a new interior incorporating design concepts from its bigger brothers the 787 and 777.

Dubbed the Sky Interior, it totally transforms the 737.

Boeing is building 47 737s a month and that rate is moving to 52 this year and 57 in 2019 to clear the backlog.

Since 1965 Boeing has received orders for over 14,000 737s.