A PIA Pakistan International Airlines A320-200 has crashed today at Karachi’s Jinnah International Airport, Pakistan, during its final approach.
PIA has revised some details of the crash. It has been confirmed that there were a total of 99 passengers and crew aboard. At this stage, at least 80 people are confirmed to have been killed, both on the ground and on-board the aircraft.
In a media briefing, PIA’s CEO, Arshad Malik, informed reporters that the A320 did not crash into any buildings. He was adamant that the aircraft crashed into a laneway in the suburb of Model Colony, Karachi.
Pakistani TV has revealed images of the Karachi runway. On them it is possible to see scrape marks caused by the engines of PIA PK8303.
According to AvHerald, during the first approach the landing gear was still retracted when the aircraft neared the runway; also the pilot had not indicated either an anomaly or an emergency.
The Airbus A320, with registration AP-BLD, was performing flight PK8303 from Lahore to Karachi (Pakistan) with 91 passengers and 7 crew – 51 men, 31 women and nine children, according to the PIA flight manifest.
“The last we heard from the pilot was that he has some technical problem. It is a very tragic incident.”PIA spokesman Abdullah H. Khan
This was the second attempt at landing, the first approach was aborted due to problems with the extension of the landing gear and they were forced to performed a go-around.
“The pilot was told that both runways were ready for him to land. However, the pilot decided to do a go-around. Why did he do that, due to what technical reason, that we will find out.”said PIA CEO Air Marshal Arshad Malik to Geo News
The aircraft impacted a dense urban area, called Model Colony, and burst into flames. It is still unclear how many casualties and survivor from the crash.
According to Geo News, ambulances faced difficulty in arriving at the scene; as the streets are narrow in that area and there was a huge presence of people. Rescue sources said that 15-20 people have been helped out from under the rubble.
PlaneSpottersPK shared photos taken of the aircraft before the crash. It is possible to see that the RAM (Ram Air Turbine) is deployed and dark marks can be seen under both engines.
There are Survivors!
57 people have been confirmed death and three survivors until now; 4 people on the ground were injured.
More information to come when available.
Feature Image: Anna Zvereva