BEIJING — A woman who crawled out of the wreckage of a TransAsia plane to call for help met with Taiwan's premier Friday as the nation mourned the 48 who died on the aircraft.
Nine other passengers survived when the plane crashed Wednesday evening in the aftermath of a strong typhoon as it made a second attempt to land at Magong airport on Penghu island in the Taiwan Strait that separates self-ruled Taiwan from mainland China.
Friday in Kaohsiung, where the TransAsia flight began its journey, Premier Jiang Yi-huah visited Hung Yu-ting, 34, who was the first survivor to extricate herself from the plane's wreckage and found a phone to call her father, Taiwan's state news agency CNA reported. Hung, a worker at the Penghu employment center under Taiwan's Ministry of Labor, remained in intensive care Friday.
Hung flew to Kaohsiung on Tuesday for a conference that was canceled because of Typhoon Matmo, a strong storm that had mostly passed through the island by Wednesday afternoon. Although some flights were canceled, others went ahead, including Hung's return home to Penghu on GE222.
After the plane crashed, Hung — who had been sitting near a wing in row 12 of the twin-engine turboprop ATR-72 — pushed her way past the seats that trapped her and crawled to safety through a nearby hole in the fuselage, her father, Hung Chang-ming, who lived nearby, told the Taipei Times.
"She crawled out from the plane, went across to someone's house at No. 56 and called me at home," he said. "She said weakly into the phone, 'The plane crashed.' She told me the location of the crash."
Hung said he rushed to the site and began helping survivors. His daughter had been rescued by others. She suffered burns to her back and legs, as well as inhalation burns, but she is expected to fully recover, the newspaper reported.
At a hospital in the capital of Taipei on Friday, President Ma Ying-jeou visited another survivor, Lee Wei-tung, 10, who is being treated for smoke inhalation. Lee was recovering and likely to make a full recovery in the near future, Ma said, according to CNA.
Li Shunji, 63, who suffers from heart disease, managed to crawl out of the plane by himself, said relatives who called his survival a "miracle," according to the China Times newspaper.
More details emerged about the 48 who didn't survive the crash.
Yeh Ken-chuang, 82, a carpenter and master of traditional Taiwanese temple architecture, was about to be declared a "living national treasure" candidate by the government, CNA reported.
A firefighter, Lee Ming-tsun, 47, who was returning to Penghu after a holiday, also perished.
"He is my brother," shouted his colleagues when they found Lee's body in the wreckage, said Penghu county fire bureau chief Hong Yung-peng. The firefighters were "shocked and saddened" by the discovery, Hong told CNA.
Military police officer Tsai Min-hua leaves behind a 6-year-old son and a 4-year-old daughter, the China Times reported.
Tsai ended up on Wednesday's flight after his flight returning to his military base on Penghu was canceled Tuesday.
The two "black boxes" of the TransAsia flight were returned to Taiwan's main island Thursday. According to the Aviation Safety Council (ASC), the cockpit voice recorder was slightly damaged, but its memory should be intact, and the data recorder appeared relatively undamaged.
The council will issue a preliminary result of its investigation within four weeks and a more detailed report within three to four months, ASC Executive Director Thomas Wang told Taipei Times.
Contributing: Sunny Yang