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EgyptAir Flight MS804 crash: Here's what you need to know

An EgyptAir flight carrying 66 people vanished from radar and crashed into the Mediterranean Sea, officials said early Thursday.

Here's what we know so far:

>>The latest coverage of EgyptAir MS804

1. The latest: More wreckage of the missing plane has been found, including body parts, passengers' belongings and passengers' seats, an EgyptAir official said around 4:50 p.m. local Cairo time Friday.

 Earlier in the day, an Egyptian military spokesman confirmed that officials found debris and luggage from the missing flight 180 miles north of the city of Alexandria. EgyptAir confirmed the news on social media.

The debris was found roughly five miles south of the area where the plane disappeared from radar around 2:45 a.m. local time Thursday.

One day earlier, Greek officials said they found two orange items believed to be from the missing plane. EgyptAir officials announced wreckage was found Thursday evening local time. Greek air safety officials later said the debris does not belong to a plane.

2. What happened? EgyptAir Flight MS804 from Paris to Cairo went missing about 2:45 a.m. Thursday local time, The Associated Press reports. Greece's defense minister said the plane, which reportedly was flying at 37,000 feet, lost altitude and made abrupt turns before it disappeared from radar. It was 10 miles into Egyptian airspace and about 175 miles north of Alexandria. 

While EgyptAir said via social media that "the reason of disappearance hasn't been yet confirmed" an official later said "terror was a strong possibility" for the crash.  There was no distress call, Egyptian Prime Minister Sherif Ismail told Egypt's state news agency. French President Francois Hollande added that "no hypothesis can be ruled out.

>> PHOTOS: EgyptAir Flight MS804 disappears over Mediterranean

3. What type of aircraft was it? The plane was an Airbus A320 manufactured in 2003, EgyptAir saidAccording to CNN, planes in the A320 family can carry up to 180 passengers. While International Bureau of Aviation President Phil Seymour said the planes have  "a fantastic safety record," there have been over a dozen crashes involving the A320.  

>>History of crashes involving Airbus A320

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4. Who was on board? According to EgyptAir, 56 passengers and 10 crew members were on the plane, including 30 Egyptians, 15 French, two Iraqis, and one each from Britain, Belgium, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Chad, Portugal, Algeria and Canada. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion said in a statement that two Canadians were on the flight.

 Among the passengers were one child and two babies, the AP reports.

One of the Canadians on the flight was identified by EgyptAir as Marwa Hamdy. No other details on Hamdy were provided.

The British passenger was identified by multiple outlets as 40-year-old Richard Osman, a Welsh-born geologist. 

In a statment, Kuwait's Foreign Ministry said Abdulmohsen al-Muteiri was on the flight. The Guardian reported al-Muteiri, a father of two, worked as a professor of economics and was headed to Cairo for a conference.

Family members told the newspaper Samar Ezzeldin, 27, was among the seven Egyption cabin crew members on the flight. She had recently gotten married.

French officials and Proctor & Gamble identified one of the passengers as Ahmed Helal, a plant manager at Procter & Gamble in Amiens, France.

According to CNN, others on the plane included Amgad Adib, a businessman in his late 40s, and Joao David e Silva, a 62-year-old father of four.

>> RELATED: The most famous, deadliest, oddest hijackings and how they ended

5. What do we know about the pilots? EgyptAir said the pilot had 6,275 flying hours, including 2,101 in the Airbus 320, and the co-pilot had 2,766.

The pilot was identified as 36-year-old Mohamed Saeed Shaqeer, The New York Times reported. His co-pilot was identified as 24-year-old Mohamed Mamdouh.

"An Egyptian Interior Ministry official said the men had no known political affiliations, and had passed their periodic background security checks," according to the Times.

>> RELATED: Timeline: 12 aviation mysteries

6. The investigation: The investigation is ongoing and likely to focus on finding the plane's black box. Aviation experts claim that it is likely terrorism is involved, but all scenarios are being examined.

<iframe src="//;border=false" width="100%" height="750" frameborder="no" allowtransparency="true"></iframe><script src="//;border=false"></script>[View the story "Reports: EgyptAir Flight 804 crash" on Storify]

Man with cerebral palsy crawls off United Airlines plane, says employees didn't help

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A man with cerebral palsy says he was left to crawl off a United Airlines plane without assistance last week.

According to WRC-TV, D'Arcee Neal had to use the restroom Tuesday night after his plane from San Francisco landed at Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia. But after the airline failed to provide him with an aisle chair or employee assistance, he ended up having to crawl to the door, he said.

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"I was like, 'I don't have time for this,' and I decided to get out and crawl down the plane to my chair, got in it and then just went about my business and left the airport," said Neal, who reportedly gave a speech about accessible transportation while he was in San Francisco.

He added, "It's humiliating. No one should have to do what I did."

The airline told WRC it was sorry for the delay.

Disability-related complaints have risen 9 percent since last year, according to the National Disability Rights Network, WRC reports.

Read more here.

>> Click here to watch a video report

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'Agitated' Aer Lingus passenger reportedly bites man, then dies on flight

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An Aer Lingus plane made an emergency landing in Cork, Ireland, on Sunday evening after a man on board died.

The 24-year-old passenger reportedly became extremely violent and bit another passenger, The Guardian reportsAccording to RTE News, the man was restrained, then became unconscious and later died. 

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The pilot informed air-traffic controllers that instead of completing the flight from Lisbon, Portugal, to Dublin, Ireland, the jet would need to make an emergency landing at the Cork airport.

The Guardian reports that all of the nearly 170 passengers on board the flight were questioned by authorities Sunday night. The person who was bitten during the incident was taken to a local hospital.

This video includes images from Aero Icarus / CC BY SA 2.0 and Lord of the Wings / CC BY SA 2.0.

American Airlines pilot dies mid-flight on Boston-bound plane

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An American Airlines pilot died during a flight to Boston early Monday morning, forcing his co-pilot to make an emergency landing.

The pilot, later identified as Capt. Michael Johnston, 57, died from an unspecified illness. The Airbus A320 jet left Phoenix just before midnight Monday and diverted to Syracuse Hancock International Airport shortly after 7 a.m. 

Upon descent, crew members told the 147 people on board that the pilot was ill and the flight was being diverted, several passengers told Boston's WFXT.

"They just said, 'Hi. We have to make an emergency landing. The pilot's not feeling well,'" said Michael Litterio. "When we landed, we thought that he just wasn't feeling well. We had no idea he had passed. It was extremely shocking."

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WFXT obtained air-traffic control communications as the co-pilot of Flight 550 prepared for an early landing.

"Syracuse, American 550 is out at 15,000 for 5,000," the crew said. "Medical emergency, the captain is incapacitated. Request handling for runway, one-zero landing."

"They said that the pilot was really sick, and that was it," Julia House said." And we saw ambulances pulling up."

Passengers waited inside the airport as emergency crews removed the body and prepared the plane for another crew to fly the aircraft to Boston. The somber news was confirmed when they re-boarded the plane. The flight finally arrived at Logan Airport shortly after noon.

"I really think you've got to hand it to the co-pilot," said passenger Frank Cacciola, "because, I'll tell you, I don't know what I would've done in that situation."

Cacciola and a few other passengers took pictures of a rainbow that formed while the pilot's body was removed from the plane in Syracuse. They said the unexpected sight provided comfort.

"This rainbow came out, and the skies opened up as if his spirit was leaving the plane and going to heaven," Cacciola said.

>> Click here to watch a video report from WFXT

Boston News, Weather, Sports | FOX 25 | MyFoxBoston

Laser pointer incidents with airplanes on the rise

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An airline passenger said he was temporarily blinded earlier this week by a laser pointer aimed at his plane as it landed at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

The number of similar reports received by the Federal Aviation Administration is soaring. FAA reports 4,024 such incidents so far this year compared to 3,895 in 2014.

"It was definitely terrifying," Delta Air Lines passenger Scott Reynolds said.

Reynolds described over Skype from Virginia what happened to him minutes before his flight from West Palm Beach landed Wednesday night in Atlanta.

"A green light hit my left eye, and I jumped, because when a green light blinds you, at first, you think the engine blew up or something outside your window happened," Reynolds said.

Reynolds said the green light flashed him a second time.

"At that point, I knew it was a laser or something from the ground, and then I looked down and I could see the green laser moving around," Reynolds said.

It's illegal to shine laser pointers at planes.

"It bathes the aircraft in a green light, and if it hits a pilot's eye it can be very dangerous,” said Capt. Rick Dominquez, executive administrator of the Air Line Pilots Association.

"Delta is in touch with the FAA on this episode and will do everything it can to assist the FAA and other authorities to investigate and apprehend perpetrators," a Delta spokesperson said in an email.

Anyone who gets caught aiming a laser pointer at a plane could face a federal fine as high as $11,000. Congress is considering legislation that would make it a criminal offense.

10 things you didn't know about aviation

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Wednesday, Aug. 19, is National Aviation Day, in celebration of Orville Wright's 144th birthday. National Aviation Day was established in 1939 by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

Here are 10 more facts about aviation that you probably didn't know:

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1. KLM Airlines, Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij (Royal Aviation Company), was founded in 1919, making it the world's oldest airline still operating under its original name.

2. The air pressure onboard an airplane affects your sense of taste.

3. Although the Hindenburg was filled with 7 million cubic feet of highly combustible gas, there was a smoker’s lounge onboard.

4. The first female flight attendants were hired in 1930 by United Airlines.

5. The German airline Lufthansa purchases more than 10 tons of caviar per year.

6. Hijacking an airplane was not officially outlawed until 1961.

7. An estimated 25 percent of passengers pay full price for first class.

8. The other 75 percent receive upgrades, use frequent-flyer miles or are employed by the airline.

9. Stewardess is the longest word in the English language that is typed entirely with the left hand.

10. The next time you are flying the friendly skies, remember: Statistically, it's the safest way to travel.

5 things to know about possible MH370 debris found on Reunion Island

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A U.S. official says air safety investigators have a "high degree of confidence" that debris found in the Indian Ocean is from a wing component of a Boeing 777 aircraft – the same model as Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared last year.

Here's what we know so far about investigators' findings.

1. Coastal workers found the wreckage Wednesday. The 6.5- to 8-foot-long piece of debris appears to be a "flaperon" – part of an aircraft wing – that has been in the water for a long time and collected sea life.

>> RELATED: US official: Debris belongs to same type of aircraft as missing Malaysia plane

2. Officials believe the debris is from a Boeing 777. According to The Associated Press, a U.S. official who declined to be identified says investigators — including one from Boeing — identified the wreckage as a piece of a 777 aircraft. French law enforcement is on the scene to examine the debris, and Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said a team is headed to Reunion Island.

"Whatever wreckage found needs to be further verified before we can ever confirm that it is belonged to MH370," Lai said.

>> PHOTOS: 777 debris found on Indian Ocean island

3. There are no other missing Boeing 777s. If the wreckage is confirmed to be from a Boeing 777, "it would almost certainly have to belong to Flight 370," the AP reports. Officials believe that flight crashed in the southern Indian Ocean 16 months ago.

>> RELATED: Timeline of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

4. The debris was found nearly 2,650 miles away from the current MH370 search site in the southern Indian Ocean. According to the AP, Reunion Island is more than 3,500 miles away from the last known location of MH370.

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5. Could currents have carried MH370 wreckage to Reunion Island? "Someone's going to have to really reverse-engineer the flow pattern of the ocean and try and backtrack where this may have floated from," Greg Feith, a former National Transportation Safety Board investigator, said in an interview with NBC News.

Mashable adds that it is possible that "debris from a plane crash 16 months ago ... made a circuitous and meandering journey" to an island thousands of miles away.

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