About two dozen passengers, who were on the Air India plane from Nagpur that had a tyre burst while landing in Mumbai on Tuesday night, needed medical help to treat injuries caused during the rough touchdown.
Airfield staffers noticed a thick cloud of oil fumes and sparks coming off the landing gear of the Airbus A320 after the tyre burst. The AI 630 flight carrying 160 passengers on board exited the main runway through N8, a high speed exit, and got stuck before reaching its designated parking bay, said airport staffers. It helped that the fire station was near to the location.
“Thick foam sprayed timely on the undercarriage doused the fire before it turned fatal,” said a staffer, requesting anonymity. But the main airstrip was unusable for nearly two hours because of the stranded aircraft.
The flight crew had rolled out inflated chutes to evacuate passengers according to the laid down procedure for fire emergencies. Some fliers got cuts and bruises while sliding off the emergency chutes, added airport sources.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) benched both the pilots as it probes the incident. “M/s AI aircraft operating AI 630 involved in incident after landing at runway 27 in Mumbai. There was a tyreburst after landing and emergency evacuation carried out. Further details are awaited,” said M Sathiyavathy, the DGCA chief.