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Kenya Jetliner Crash

A Kenya Airways jet with 114 people on board crashed early Saturday. The jet went down near the town of Lolodorf, about 155 miles south of the coastal city of Douala, where it had taken off after midnight. No word was available on survivors. A regional Communications officer, Alex Bayeck said that search planes were flying over the forested area where the airliner gave off a distress signal, but no wreckage had been spotted.

I read two stories. The first, from the Washington Post and the second, The New York Times.

The Washington Post story was reported by Emmanuel Tumanjong. Tumanjong wrote about how the jetliner was found. He wrote about how dozens of rescue workers and journalists walked through a swamp at night but did not find any survivors. I think that he did a great job of creating an immediate news worthy event. What I mean by that is he writes about what was done to find the victims and what needs to be done. The information was written so simplistic which I think creates an ergency. He also paraphrases reporters who at the scene, which you don't read too often.

Tumanjong than summarizes what happened in the crash. What he added to the summary was that the cause of the crash is still unclear. He does a great job on explaining what happened in the following paragraphs, making up for the unclear causation. This shows the readers that the reporting is thorough and gives insight from many different angles. He also avoided telling too much background too soon. This is important because it's not forcing the reader to understand the whole event all at once. If Tumanjong would have given too much information in the second paragraph it would have overwhlemed the reader and the reader would have moved on to another story.

The New York Times story was reported by the Associated Press. The story is from May 5, so it does not talk about how the jetliner was found, but about the crash its self. In the last paragraph, it says, "The flight departed Douala at 12:05 a.m. and was to arrive in Nairobi at 6:15 a.m." I think that this information should have been in the second paragraph. It should have been in the second paragraph because it's vital information about the story. Information that does not matter should be at the end, the time the jetliner was suppose to land is important. Also toward the end was the number of people involved in the crash, again this is important information that should have been placed in the lead. Maybe if this was a follow story it could be placed toward the end, but it was not.