Rescue helicopters from the French Gendarmerie and the Air Force are seen in front of the French Alps during a rescue operation next to the crash site of an Airbus A320, near Seyne-les-Alpes, March 24, 2015. REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
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A passenger jet carrying 150 people crashed Tuesday in the French Alps as it flew from Barcelona to Duesseldorf.There was no obvious reason why the Germanwings A320 plane should have crashed in the middle of its flight and German Chancellor Angela Merkel urged people not to speculate on the cause. The plane left Barcelona at 9:55 a.m. Germanwings CEO Thomas Winkelmann said it began descending again shortly after it reached its cruising height of 38,000 feet following takeoff from Barcelona Airport.Winkelmann said the pilot had more than 10 years' experience working for Germanwings and its parent airline Lufthansa. Airbus said the A320 was delivered to Lufthansa in 1991 . Germanwings said Flight 9525 carried 144 passengers, including two babies, and 6 crew members. In addition, the safest part of a flight is when the plane is at cruising elevation.The last time a passenger jet crashed in France was the 2000 Concorde accident, which left 113 dead -- 109 in the plane and four on the ground.The aircraft was delivered to Lufthansa in 1991, had approximately 58,300 flight hours in some 46,700 flights, Airbus said.
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