Co-pilot sucked halfway out of Sichuan Airlines' aircraft after cockpit window breaks at 32,000 feet over China

Beijing: A plane carrying 128 people made an emergency landing in southwest China on Monday after a cockpit window broke at 32,000 feet, sucking the co-pilot partly out of the aircraft, authorities and the pilot said.

The Airbus A319 of Sichuan Airlines was bound for Lhasa in Tibet from the southwestern city of Chongqing when the drama began. The flight was diverted to Chengdu in Sichuan province.

"The windshield burst suddenly and a loud noise was heard, and when I looked to the side, I saw that the co-pilot was already halfway out of the window. Luckily his seatbelt was tied," pilot Liu Chuanjian told the Chengdu Business Daily.

Employees checking a Sichuan Airlines Airbus A319 after an emergency landing, as a broken cockpit window (L) is covered. AFP

Employees checking a Sichuan Airlines Airbus A319 after an emergency landing, as a broken cockpit window (L) is covered. AFP

"Everything was flying about in the cockpit, a lot of equipment was working badly and the noise was so loud that you could not hear the radio anymore."

The plane was vibrating strongly and it was impossible to read the instruments, said Liu, who was hailed as a hero on social media.

Despite these difficulties and the intense cold, the pilot managed to slow the aircraft from its original speed of about 800-900 kph and land in about 20 minutes.

It was unclear how badly the co-pilot, who suffered facial and waist injuries, had been hurt. A female flight attendant was slightly injured during the landing.

The Civil Aviation Administration of China said in a statement that part of the cockpit window broke as the plane was flying over Chengdu.

The cause of the incident was under investigation, it said.

Images posted on the official People's Daily newspaper online appear to show a cockpit window completely missing.

A video shows oxygen masks deployed, and flight attendants walking up and down the aisle to give passengers instructions on how to disembark.

It was the second emergency landing in China in less than a month.

On 15 April, an Air China flight was diverted after a man briefly took hostage a crew member he was threatening with a fountain pen.


Updated Date: May 16, 2018 07:21 AM

Also Watch

It's A Wrap: Omerta star Rajkummar Rao in conversation with Parul Sharma
  • Thursday, April 26, 2018 In the Kanjarbhat community, a campaign against 'virginity tests' is slowly gaining ground
  • Thursday, April 19, 2018 Watch: National-level skater and coach Dhwanit Rele trains and nurtures budding athletes
  • Monday, May 14, 2018 FOMO Episode 1: Google Assistant, This is America, Sonam's wedding & Global Warming
  • Saturday, May 19, 2018 Social Media Star: Rajkummar Rao and Bhuvan Bam open up about selfie culture, online trolls

Also See