Pannet / Rhylanor / Spinward Marches

Starship Crashes, Downport Dome Failing

Evacuation of survivors is continuing at Downport Dome as workers frantically try to prevent the collapse of all life support in the largest city on Pannet (2519 Spinward Marches; E9C5677-7).  Meanwhile rescue workers are attempting to reach isolated pockets of survivors, hampered by fire and smoke as well as the poisonous hot atmosphere of the world.

Four hours ago, the subsidized merchant Youghi's Pocket suffered a major systems failure while on final approach to the downport, veered off course, and struck the dome at a commercial district of the city.  Structural supports failed as the local dome roof collapsed, and the wreckage of the starship smashed into what had minutes before been teeming shops and offices.  Escaping oxygen burned instantly in Pannet's atmosphere, turning the area into an inferno.

The Youghi's Pocket called Signal GK less than three minutes before the ship crashed.  Breach alarms were sounded throughout Downport Dome, but it is thought that a series of false alarms over the last three months left the citizens complacent, and not many took the alert seriously.  Nevertheless, schools and some industrial plants were able to rush to containment shelters; it is those shelters that rescuers are currently trying to reach in the hope that there are survivors within.

Emergency workers were called out immediately, but despite their best efforts were forced to back out of the disaster site.  Corrosive byproducts of the fire made the situation worse, and further bulkhead breaches ignited the atmosphere in adjacent areas.  Services were called in from nearby Treefish Dome to reinforce Downport personnel.  Treefish workers have managed to enter through the roof breach and move in behind the fire to get to containment shelters, although constantly threatened by spontaneous combustion of debris in the chemical nightmare of the post-fire atmosphere.

Three hours after the crash, life support safeguards started to become overloaded and failures were reported throughout the city.  Air started to burn off through overheated valves at the bulkheads, and the life support plants were struggling to keep up.  The decision was taken to evacuate the entire city.  Since the starport entrances were already a casualty, the operation has to take place using vaccsuits and ground vehicles.  About 30,000 people, including children, need to be out of the city before the life support plants fail completely.

Engineers fear a domino effect could lead to the loss of the entire city, even though structural components are working as designed and the dome will remain standing.  The death toll is completely unknown until rescue workers have found the containment shelters; it may not be finalized for several months.

Travellers should be advised that there will be no downport facilities at Pannet until further notice, and although there are limited highport services still available those are being reserved for insystem traffic for the duration of the emergency.  Incoming ships are currently being diverted to the H-class insystem port in orbit P5-25.