Air India Express plane skids off runway, killing at least 16 and injuring more than 100

Author: CBS/AFP
Published: Updated:
The Air India Express flight that skidded off a runway while landing at the airport in Kozhikode, Kerala state, India, Friday, Aug. 7, 2020. (AP)

A special evacuation flight bringing people home to India who had been trapped abroad because of the coronavirus skidded off a runway and split in two while landing Friday in heavy rain in the southern state of Kerala. The crash killed at least 16 passengers and injured 123 more, police said.

CBS News has confirmed both pilots, including Captain Deepak Vasant Sathe, were among those killed in the crash.  Abdul Karim, a senior Kerala state police officer, said at least 15 of the injured were in critical condition, and that rescue operations were over.

Air India Express passenger jet crashes while landing (CBS News)

The NDTV news channel said the plane flew from Dubai to Kozhikode, also called Calicut, in Kerala, India’s southernmost state.

No fire was reported on the Boeing 737 aircraft after it landed and broke into two pieces, Rajiv Jain, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Ministry, said.

Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep S. Puri said in a statement 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.”

Video posted to social media showed the aftermath of the crash with fire hoses being sprayed on the aircraft.

An inquiry will be conducted by the ministry’s Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau, he said.

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