Swiss vintage plane crash 'kills all 20 people on board'

The cause of the crash is still under investigation

The incident happened yesterday when the plane crashed in a basin at 2,450m above sea level on the west side of the Piz Segnas mountain shortly before 5pm local time.

"Based on the situation at the crash site we can say that the aircraft smashed into the ground nearly vertically at relatively high speed", said Daniel Knecht of the Swiss Transportation Safety Investigation Board.

Police spokeswoman Anita Senti told reporters that it was with "sad certainty" that "the 20 people aboard perished".

Police said Sunday they had determined that the 17 passengers and three crew members on board the plane all died.

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JU-52 HB-HOT aircraft does not have a crash-resistant cockpit voice and data recorders because it is an older model.

The area, which includes a glacier, is popular with hikers.

Ju-Air said one of its aircraft had been involved in the accident on Saturday.

He said that officials expect the investigation of the cause to be "relatively complex".

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In another Swiss plane crash yesterday, a tourist plane carrying a couple and two young children crashed in a forest in the Nidwald canton and immediately burst into flames. The operator said it was saddened by the news and it had set up a helpline for relatives.

Chief executive and co-founder Kurt Waldmeier said the planes "are flown exclusively by very experienced professional pilots, and strictly checked and maintained by our own technicians".

Based out of Duebendorf in canton Zurich, JU-AIR offers sightseeing and adventure flights around the Alps.

The company, which operates two other Ju-52s, suspended flights until further notice after the crash.

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