PIA Airbus A320 crashes in residential area near Karachi airport with 100 passengers on board: New images show the plane seconds before the incident
KARACHI: At least two passengers survived the crash of a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) plane in a residential area while landing at Jinnah International Airport in Karachi on Friday, the civil aviation authority said. There were 107 people on board in which at least 73 were killed and dozens others injured.
According to sources, flight PK-8303 – PIA Airbus A320 – took off from Lahore Allama Iqbal International Airport and crashed in Model Colony area in Malir, approximately 4 kilometers away from the Jinnah International Airport Karachi.
Footage shows thick black smoke rising to the sky behind a seemingly new house.
“The plane crashed in Karachi. There were 99 passengers and seven crew members along with two captains were onboard the plane,” Abdul Sattar Khokhar, spokesman for the aviation authority of Pakistan.
Reportedly, four houses have also been damaged in the incident and two persons have been shifted to nearby hospital. A dozen bodies were also found at the crash site. One of the survivors, the owner of a commercial bank, is in stable condition.
It was an Airbus 320 plane which has capacity to carry around 180 passengers, however, number of passengers were kept at 50% capacity limit to ensure social distancing measures amid coronavirus pandemic.
A few seconds before the incident, a witness filmed the aircraft flying at a very low altitude.
The sad plane crash incident comes just days after the country authorized the resumption of domestic commercial flights. For more than a month, domestic connections had been suspended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Very few international flights had been maintained.
Pakistan has a mixed record for aviation safety, with frequent civil and military aircraft and helicopter crashes having occurred over the years.
The last major air crash in Pakistan dates back to December 2016, when a PIA aircraft carrying out a domestic flight had crashed in the mountainous north of the country, killing 47 people.
The deadliest crash in recent years in Pakistan dates back to 2010. An Airbus 321 from private Airblue, flying from Karachi to Islamabad, crashed in the Margalla Hills north of Islamabad shortly before landing in the capital, killing 152 people on board.