An IAI Westwind plane, carrying medical supplies, caught fire and exploded as it was taking off at Manila NAIA’s runway 24 tonight. The plane is owned by Lionair Inc with aircraft registry RPC-5880.

The crashed aircraft, is an Israel Aircraft Industries IAI-1124A Westwind model. It was equipped with 2 Honeywell 731-3-1G engines.

Lionair inc is a Philippines-based private charter airplane company.

The aircraft’s last recorded flight was yesterday from Butuan Bancasi Airport (BXU/RPWE) to Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL/RPLL).

The crash happened when the aircraft was taking off on Runway 24 bound for Tokyo Haneda Airport.

Other flights arriving at Manila, are diverting to Angeles City airport nearby after a short hold; including Korea Air flight KE623.

Flight Track KE623

It was reported that 8 people were on the aircraft, including 2 pilots, one cabin crew, one patient, one patients assistant, one nurse, one doctor and one flight medical personnel. The plane was performing a medical evacuation (medevac) flight.

The aircraft was built in 1981 and is currently 39 years old. It has been operated in Canada and Spain in the past.

The IAI Westwind is a business jet initially produced by Aero Commander, as the 1121 Jet Commander. It was developed by the United States and Isreal together. According to data from the ASN Database, IAI-1124 had 22 hull-loss accidents with a total of 47 fatalities.


UPDATE: Unfortunately, MIAA confirmed that there were no survivors among the right passengers.

Cover Image: Twitter @ MikeGo