On the 18th of November, a LATAM Airlines Airbus A320 collided with a fire truck while it was accelerating for takeoff from Jorge Chávez International Airport in Lima, Peru. Two firefighters died in the incident, a third firefighter was taken to a nearby hospital with serious injuries. This accident marks the 1st ever-hull loss of an Airbus A320neo.
The LATAM Chile Airbus A320neo with registration CC-BHB was accelerating on Lima’s runway 16 as flight LA2213 from Lima to Juliaca when it collided with a fire truck, which crossed the active runway without authorization. The crew rejected the takeoff at high speed (at about 130 knots) but wasn’t able to avoid contact with the fire truck. Multiple fire trucks and vehicles responding to another aircraft with flashing lights and sirens approached the active runway, resulting in the collision.
As a result of the collision, the right main gear collapsed and caught fire due to the resulting friction against the runway. The aircraft veered right towards the right-hand runway edge coming to a stop partially off the runway about 2500 meters down the runway. The fire erupted around the right-hand engine. Footage shared on the internet show plume of black smoke rising alongside fumes from the right side of the aircraft.
“I express my heartfelt condolences to the relatives of Ángel Torres and Nicolás Santa Gadea, brave firefighters who died in the accident. My thoughts and my prayers are with them. I pray for the recovery of the wounded.”President Pedro Castillo paid tribute to the firefighters
The aircraft has sustained significant damage however none of the crew or passengers has been seriously injured. A total of 102 passengers and 6 crew members were on board the aircraft and all of them were able to evacuate the aircraft. According to local reports, 4 passengers suffered serious injuries whereas 36 passengers received minor injuries and were taken to nearby hospitals. Two firefighters lost their lives in the incident, and a third firefighter on the truck received serious injuries and is in the Intensive Care Unit in stable condition.
“We regret to confirm that the flight LA2213 that covered the Lima – Juliaca route, operated by LATAM Airlines Peru suffered an accident on the ground. There are no passengers or crew members deceased.”
Lima Airport remains closed until 1 pm on Saturday at the earliest. As reported by the Aviation Herald, the emergency vehicles entered runway 16 from the west at the height of taxiway B without authorization and eventually collided with flight LA2213 as seen in the footage below. The fire trucks were responding to another aircraft that had suffered mechanical problems.
Lima’s Airport Authority reported that all passengers were doing well. A thorough investigation has been launched to determine the facts and possible culpability.
Feature Image via Twitter