Devon woman Joanna Toole named as Ethiopian Airlines plane crash victim

A woman from Devon has been identified as one of the victims of a plane crash which has claimed the lives of 157 people.

Joanna Toole, originally from Exmouth, is one of seven Britons to have been killed after Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 crashed minutes after take-off.

The plane took off for Nairobi, Kenya, from Addis Ababa at 8.38am local time on Sunday but crashed around Bishoftu, some 31 miles (50km) south of the capital at 8.44am.

36-year-old Ms Toole, who worked for the United Nations, was traveling to Nairobi to represent her department at the UN Environment Assembly.

Manuel Barange, the director of Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations fisheries and aquaculture department commented that he was "profoundly sad and lost for words" over the death of his colleague.

Joanna Toole was named among the dead by a colleague at the UN. Credit: Irving of Exeter

In tribute to her, Mr. Barange added she was " a wonderful human being, who loved her work with a passion. Our love to her family and loved ones."

The cause of the crash is yet to be determined but the airline confirmed the pilot had notified officials of difficulties and the plane had been cleared to turn around during its six minutes in the air.

Speaking to local newspaper Ms Toole's father Adrian expressed his profound sadness at the loss of his daughter.

In an interview with Devon Live he said: "Everybody was very proud of her and the work she did, we're still in a state of shock. Joanna was genuinely one of those people who you never heard a bad word about."

The British embassy in Ethiopia listed the emergency contact numbers for anyone worried about British nationals.