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Avianca Flight 203 facts for kids

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Avianca Flight 203
HK-1803, the aircraft involved in the bombing
Bombing summary
Date November 27, 1989
Summary Bombing
Place Cerro Canoas, Soacha, Colombia
4°33′30″N 74°15′45″W / 4.55833°N 74.26250°W / 4.55833; -74.26250Coordinates: 4°33′30″N 74°15′45″W / 4.55833°N 74.26250°W / 4.55833; -74.26250
Passengers 101
Crew 6
Fatalities 107
Survivors 0
Aircraft type Boeing 727-21
Airline/user Avianca
Registration HK-1803
Flew from El Dorado Int'l Airport
Flying to Alfonso Bonilla Aragón Int'l Airport

Avianca Flight 203 was an internal flight from El Dorado International Airport in Bogotá, Colombia to Alfonso Bonilla Aragón International Airport in Cali, Colombia. On November 27, 1989, the Boeing 727-21 (registered HK-1803) was destroyed by a bomb while flying over Soacha. All 107 passengers and 3 people on the ground were killed. The bombing was ordered by the Medellín drug cartel.


The aircraft was a Boeing 727-21 with registration HK-1803. It was built in 1966 and delivered to Pan Am on May 28, 1966. In 1975, the aircraft was bought from Avianca. The aircraft changed registrations when bought.


Flight 203 took off at 7:13 a.m. Shortly after, while at 13,000 feet (4,000 m), a bomb was set off, causing fuel to explode. A second explosion made the front of the aircraft to separate from the back of the aircraft. The debris was spread across the town of Soacha. All 107 passengers and crew and 3 people on the ground were killed.


An investigation found the cause of the explosion to be plastic explosives. Drug cartel leader, Pablo Escobar, planned the bombing. The reason was to kill Colombian presidential candidate, César Gaviria Trujillo. However, Gaviria did not get on the plane, and became the president of Colombia.

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