Air India Plane, The Boeing 737 split in two while deadly landing Friday in substantial downpour in southern India, leaving 18 dead with many harmed individuals.
NEW DELHI (AP) — A special departure flight bringing individuals home to India who had been caught abroad on account of the coronavirus slipped off a runway and split in two while landing Friday in overwhelming rain in the southern territory of Kerala, killing about 18 travelers and harming 123 more, police said.
Abdul Karim, a senior Kerala state cop, said the dead included one of the pilots of the two-year-old Boeing 737-800 flying for Air India Express airline. He said approximately 15 of the harmed were in severe condition, and that salvage operations were over.
The NDTV news channel said the plane flew from Dubai to Kozhikode, also named Calicut, in Kerala, India’s southernmost state.
— NDTV (@ndtv) August 8, 2020
No fire was confirmed on the Boeing 737 airplane after it landed and broke into two pieces, Rajiv Jain, a representative for the Civil Aviation Ministry, said.
Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep S. Puri said in an explanation that the flight “overshot the runway in rainy conditions and went down 35 feet (10.6 meters) into a slope before breaking up into two pieces.”
My heart goes out to the families & friends of the 18 people who lost their lives in the air accident involving @FlyWithIX Flight IX-1344 in Kozhikode last evening & offer my heartfelt condolences.
Reasons for the mishap are being investigated. pic.twitter.com/awEGpU9EmK
— Hardeep Singh Puri (@HardeepSPuri) August 8, 2020
An investigation will be directed by the service’s Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau, he said.
Dubai-based flying advisor Mark Martin said that while it was too soon to decide the reason for the accident, yearly rainstorm conditions gave off an impression of being a factor.
“Low visibility, wet runway, low cloud base, all leading to very poor braking action is what looks like led to where we are at the moment with this crash,” Martin stated, requiring the European Aviation Safety Agency and the U.S. Bureaucratic Aviation Administration to help with the Indian government’s investigation.
There were 174 adult travelers, 10 newborn children, two pilots and four lodge crew on board the airplane, Jain said.
Amitabh Kant, who heads the administration’s planning commission, said the runway is on a ridge with profound crevasses on either side, making it hard to land.
“The incident happened because of heavy rains and poor visibility. This is truly devastating,” he told NDTV.
Pained by the plane accident in Kozhikode. My thoughts are with those who lost their loved ones. May the injured recover at the earliest. Spoke to Kerala CM @vijayanpinarayi Ji regarding the situation. Authorities are at the spot, providing all assistance to the affected.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 7, 2020
The most noticeably terrible air fiasco in India was on Nov. 12, 1996, when a Saudi Arabian Airlines flight struck midair with a Kazakhstan Airlines Flight close Charkhi Dadri in Haryana state, killing each of the 349 people on board the two planes.