Kozhikode plane crash: 17 dead, several injured as Air India Express flight IX-1344 bringing Indians home breaks into two while landing

The DGCA said that the Dubai-Kozhikode Air India Express flight (IX-1344) overshot the runway at the Karipur Interational Airport and fell into a gorge, breaking into two parts

FP Staff August 08, 2020 00:41:41 IST
Kozhikode plane crash: 17 dead, several injured as Air India Express flight IX-1344 bringing Indians home breaks into two while landing

A repatriation flight Air India Express IX-1344 bringing 184 passengers, including 10 infants from Dubai to India, broke into two while landing at Karipur International Airport in Kerala's Kozhikode on Friday evening, killing at least 17 people, including the pilot and the copilot besides injuring several passengers.

The flight was operated under the Central government's Vande Bharat Mission and was being operated by Air India Express.

The DGCA said the flight — IX 1344 — continued running to the end of the runway amid heavy rain and fell down in a gorge and "broke down in two pieces".

"No fire reported at the time of landing," it noted.

The mishap occurred at 1941 hrs. No fire was reported at the time of landing, an AIE statement said.

Malappuram Collector K Gopalakrishnan told PTI that 17 people have died in the mishap.

The identities of the dead has not been confirmed yet, however, former Union tourism minister KJ Alphons initially claimed that the pilot of the plane died in the accident.

An Air India Express spokesperson told PTI that the aircraft apparently overshot the runway. Air India Express has only Boeing 737 planes in its fleet. "As per the initial reports rescue operations are on and passengers are being taken to hospital for medical care. We will soon share the update in this regard," the civil aviation ministry stated. An earlier report from ANI quoted Mallappuram SP as saying that of the 123 passengers injured in the crash, 15 have received serious injuries.

Air India Express said that there were six crew members on board including two pilots.

The flight crew included Commander Deepak Vasant Sathe, co-pilot Akhilesh Kumar, and cabin crew members Shilpa Dashra Katare, Akshay Pal Singh, Lalit kumar and Abhik Biswas.

Twenty-four ambulances rushed to the airport.

Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan expressed shock over the accident and asked all government agencies to engage in rescue operations using all government facilities.

Kozhikode plane crash 17 dead several injured as Air India Express flight IX1344 bringing Indians home breaks into two while landing

Rescue operations underway at the crash site. PTI

The Chief Minister has deputed state minister AC Moideen to coordinate the rescue operations.

An IG of police has been deputed to oversee the rescue operations.

Fire and Rescue teams of two districts — Kozhikode and Malappuram — have been engaged.

According to information from Kozhikode medical college, seriously injured people have been admitted there. The condition of a mother and child injured in the accident was very serious, Health Minister KK Shailaja said.

"The weather conditions are what they are... Visibilty was low... The aircraft would not (be) brought to halt..," said Union civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri.

He also said that the rescue operation is still ongoing and that about 140 plus passengers have been admitted to hospital.

Help centres setup in Sharjah, Dubai and India

Help centres are being set up in Sharjah and Dubai, the ministry said in a statement.

Meanwhile, the Consulate General of India in Dubai tweeted four helpline numbers: 0565463903, 0543090572, 0543090572, 0543090575.

The Kozhikode collector said that relatives of passengers onboard Air India Express Flight IX 1344 can contact the helpline number 04952376901 for enquiries.

CMO sources said Chief Minister spoke to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the latter assured him all help and assistance from the Centre.

Vijayan informed him that rescue operations were in full swing, the sources said.

Modi as well as several leaders from the Opposition expressed shock over the incident. Modi tweeted:

Former Congerss president Rahul Gandhi said that he was shocked at the devastating news of the plane mishap in Kozhikode and offered his condolences to friends and family of those who died in the accident.

The US Ambassador to India Ken Juster also expressed his condolences.

In a show of solidarity, IndiGo Airlines tweeted out its grief over the loss of lives in the accident.

DGCA had warned Kozhikode airport last year

The DGCA had last year issued a show-cause notice to Karipur International Airport (also known as Calicut International Airport) after an audit revealed some “significant safety concerns”, according to a Times of India report.

Kozhikode plane crash 17 dead several injured as Air India Express flight IX1344 bringing Indians home breaks into two while landing

Some of the safety concerns cited in the report included “excessive rubber deposits”, which it said "can be dangerous for safe landings in the heavy rains" as they can reduce the friction of the runway strip.

The report had also found cracks and stagnant water on parts of the runway.

The DGCA has ordered a detailed inquiry into the incident.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

COVID-19 tally in Kerala crosses 4 lakh with 7,020 new cases today; Thrissur district reports highest number
India

COVID-19 tally in Kerala crosses 4 lakh with 7,020 new cases today; Thrissur district reports highest number

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said of the fresh cases, 168 people arrived from outside the state, 6,037 were infected through contact, and the source of infection for 734 was unknown

KEAM 2020 second round allotment list released, check at cee.kerala.gov.in
India

KEAM 2020 second round allotment list released, check at cee.kerala.gov.in

KEAM 2020| A total of 56,599 students qualified for admission to the engineering stream and 44,390 students for the pharmacy stream

Kerala SAY Plus two results 2020: DHSE releases exam scores on keralaresults.nic.in
India

Kerala SAY Plus two results 2020: DHSE releases exam scores on keralaresults.nic.in

To check their results, students will be required to enter their roll number along with other login credentials