ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (CBS/AP) — An Ethiopian Airlines flight crashed shortly after takeoff from Ethiopia’s capital Sunday morning, killing all 157 on board, authorities said, as grieving families rushed to airports in Addis Ababa and the destination, Nairobi. More than 30 nationalities are among the dead, including at least eight Americans.

It was not immediately clear what caused the crash of the Boeing 737-8 MAX plane, which was new and had been delivered to the airline in November. The pilot of Flight ET 302 sent out a distress call and was given clearance to return, the airline’s CEO told reporters.

The state-owned Ethiopian Airlines, widely considered the best-managed airline in Africa, calls itself Africa’s largest carrier and has ambitions of becoming the gateway to the continent. It is known as an early buyer of new aircraft as it assertively expands.

CONTINUING COVERAGE AT CBS NEWS: Ethiopian Airlines flight crashes minutes after takeoff, killing all 157 onboard

© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report

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