Jakarta: At least 20 people were killed on Tuesday when a Hercules C-130 military cargo aircraft crashed into a residential area in Medan city on Indonesia's Sumatra island, media reported.
The ill-fated military plane was carrying 12 crew members when the crash took place at 12.14 p.m. in Medan, capital of Indonesia's North Sumatra province, Xinhua news agency reported.
Indonesian Air Forces Commander Air Marshall Agus Supriatna hinted in an interview with TV One that the crash was caused by "trouble" with the plane.
Sairi Saragih, a spokeswoman for the Adam Malik hospital in the city, was quoted by media as saying that 20 bodies were so far brought to the hospital. Reports said dozens of lives might have been lost as the plane crashed into a densely populated neighbourhood of the city.
"The 12 crew members comprised three pilots, one navigator and eight technicians. The plane was in PAUM (Air Military Transport Flight) mission that carried logistics and military personnel transferred to another region," said Agus.
He said that prior to the crash, the pilot sought to return to base.
"The plane experienced trouble before the crash. It can be proved from the pilot's communication with officers at the airport tower control," Agus said, adding that the plane was manufactured in 1964, and was operated by Squadron 32 in Malang, East Java.
The plane reportedly crashed two minutes after takeoff from Medan's old airport of Polonia. The plane crashed in a housing compound located in Jl. Jamin Ginting locality in the city.