Indian airline plane crashes in Kerala, killing many
An airplane of the Air India Express, which had been bringing home people trapped abroad by the coronavirus outbreak, has crash-landed at an airport in Kerala, India, killing more than a dozen people.
The plane which was returning from Dubai had at least 17 people, including both pilots killed and more than 100 injured when the Air India Express jet crash-landed at Kozhikode airport in the Indian state of Kerala on Friday.
The plane, a Boeing-737 was about completing a special repatriation flight to bring back Indian residents who were stranded outside of the country due to the coronavirus. International commercial air travel has been stopped in India for a long time due to the spread of COVID-19.
Hardeep Puri, who is Civil Aviation Minister disclosed that the plane overshot the runway, which is situated on top of a hill, and went about 10 meters (32 feet) down a slope before breaking into two pieces, with heavy rain complicated the landing.
Already rescue operations at the scene had been completed but an investigation would be required to determine the cause of the crash, Puri added.
A total of 174 passengers, 10 infants, two pilots and five cabin crew were onboard the aircraft, Air India said.
Different types of ambulances were on the scene at the Calicut International Airport in Karipur, in the southern state of Kerala, India. The local media even showed the ambulances on the scene.
In his reaction, the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that he was “pained” to learn of the accident.
For many days even before the crash, the city of Kerala has been hit by heavy rainfall, triggering landslides that resulted in at least 15 deaths on Friday. Nearly 50 people are missing and feared trapped in debris following a landslide in Kerala’s eastern district of Idukki.