Monday, September 16, 2019

No Fatalities As Plane Skids Into Florida River

Must Read

71 Year Old Reported Missing From Ti Morne, Union

Relatives of a 71 year old woman are concerned about her safety days after she was reported missing from...

Saint Lucia Zouks Chalk Up First Win

Saint Lucia Zouks  have picked up their first win of the 2019 Caribbean Premier League. All rounder Rahkeem Cornwall's 30-ball...

Kenyan Schoolgirl Takes Own Life After ‘Period Shaming’

A schoolgirl in Kenya has taken her own life after allegedly being shamed in class for having her period...
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

MIAMI, United States (AFP) — A Boeing 737 skidded off a runway into a river after crash-landing during a lightning storm in Florida on Friday, officials said, with terrified passengers all safely evacuated to shore from the stricken jet’s wings.

The plane carrying 143 people including crew from Guantanamo Bay in Cuba slammed into shallow water next to a naval air station in Jacksonville after a hard landing that saw the plane bounce and swerve down the runway, passengers said.

No fatalities or critical injuries were reported.

“As we went down … the plane bounced and screeched and bounced more and lifted to the right and then it lifted to the left,” Cheryl Bormann, a defense attorney who was on board the flight, told CNN.

“And then it sort of swerved and then it came to a complete crash stop.”

Some oxygen masks deployed and overhead lockers flew open during the landing, she added.

Twenty-one adults were taken to local hospitals, but none were critically injured, Jacksonville sheriff’s office said on Twitter. Others were treated for minor injuries at the scene.

Captain Michael Connor, commanding officer at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, told a news conference early Saturday it was a “miracle” no more serious injuries or fatalities had occurred.

“We could be talking about a different story this evening, so I think there’s a lot to say about, you know, the professionalism of the folks that helped the passengers off the airplane … it very well could be worse,” he said.

All 136 passengers and seven aircrew on board had been accounted for, NAS Jacksonville said in a statement.

However, there were fears for a number of pet animals travelling in the plane’s luggage compartment.

The pets had “not been retrieved yet due to safety issues with the aircraft”, NAS Jacksonville said in an update on Facebook Saturday.

Images showed the Miami Air International plane lying partially submerged in water after the crash-landing, with its nose cone missing.

Passengers in life vests were instructed to clamber onto the wings of the jet before being transported to shore aboard inflatable life rafts, Bormann said.

“We couldn’t tell where we were, a river or an ocean. There was rain coming down. There was lightning and thunder. We stood on that wing for a significant period of time,” she told CNN.

Navy security and emergency response personnel including some 90 firefighters attended the scene.

Jacksonville mayor Lenny Curry tweeted that the White House had called to offer assistance as the situation was developing.

“All alive and accounted for. Our Fire and Rescue teams are family to all,” said Curry.

Teams were working to control jet fuel spilling into the St Johns River, he added.

The “Rotator” flight from the US base in Cuba carries passengers including military personnel and family members.

The National Transportation Safety Board said Saturday a team was being sent to investigate the incident.

Boeing said it was aware of the incident and providing technical assistance to the agency as it conducts its probe.

The plane involved was a Boeing 737-800, in operation for 18 years, according to website FlightRadar24.

US aerospace giant Boeing is under scrutiny following two crashes that killed a total of 346 passengers and crew and grounded its newer 737 MAX planes worldwide.

Both a Lion Air crash in Indonesia in October, and March’s Ethiopian Airlines crash outside Addis Ababa, occurred shortly after takeoff.

- Advertisement -

Headlines

PM Updates Saint Lucians Living In UK On Projects Back Home

Prime Minister Allen Chastanet Saturday night held a Town Hall meeting with Saint Lucians living in the United Kingdom. The event was held at the...

Police Respond To Report Of Gunshots At Cap Estate Party

Saint Lucia police are investigating a report that gunshots were fired during the wee hours of Saturday morning during a party in Cap Estate. According...

Jury Chosen For Trial Of Former Cop Who Killed Botham Jean

Twelve jurors and four alternates have been chosen for the  murder trial of the former Dallas cop who killed Saint Lucian, Botham Jean, 26. The...

Saint Lucia PM Backs SIDS Foundation

Saint Lucia's Prime Minister Allen Chastanet is backing the formation of a Small Island Developing States (SIDS) Foundation. Chastanet spoke in an interview at the...

More Articles