World Europe 06 Feb 2020 Three die as plane b ...

Three die as plane breaks into pieces after skidding off Istanbul runway

AFP
Published Feb 6, 2020, 7:58 am IST
Updated Feb 6, 2020, 8:22 am IST
Some of the passengers escaped through a large crack in the severed aircraft
Rescuers work to extract passengers from the crash of a Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 airplane after it skidded off the runway upon landing at Sabiha Gokcen airport in Istanbul on February 5, 2020. The plane carrying 171 passengers from the Aegean port city of Izmir split into three after landing in rough weather. Officials said no-one lost their lives in the accident, but dozens of people were injured. (AFP)
 Rescuers work to extract passengers from the crash of a Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 airplane after it skidded off the runway upon landing at Sabiha Gokcen airport in Istanbul on February 5, 2020. The plane carrying 171 passengers from the Aegean port city of Izmir split into three after landing in rough weather. Officials said no-one lost their lives in the accident, but dozens of people were injured. (AFP)

Istanbul: Three people have died and 179 were injured when a plane skidded off the runway at an Istanbul airport, caught fire and split into three after landing in rough weather.

Live images broadcast on Turkish television showed several people climbing through a large crack in the severed aircraft and escaping onto one of the wings at the rear.

 

The Boeing 737 operated by Turkish low-cost carrier Pegasus Airlines had flown into Istanbul's Sabiha Gokcen airport from the Aegean port city of Izmir on Wednesday, NTV television reported.

The plane was apparently buffeted by strong winds and heavy rain lashing Istanbul, Turkey's largest city.

Three Turks were killed and 179 injured, Turkish health hinister Fahrettin Koca told reporters.

"Some passengers evacuated the plane by themselves but others are stuck inside and our rescuers are working to free them," transport minister Mehmet Cahit Turhan said on CNN-Turk television.

The plane was carrying 177 passengers and six crew members, state news agency Anadolu said, revising the previous total given by Turkish authorities. Turkish media reports said there were 12 children on board.

Istanbul governor Ali Yerlikaya said the plane "slid some 60 m" after skidding off the runway, and then "fell about 30-40 metres" down a bank. The accident, which he attributed to bad weather, "could have had more serious consequences", he said.

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