Plane belly-lands & catches fire at Tehran’s Mehrabad airport, all passengers escape safely (VIDEO)
The aircraft was forced to land on its belly after its landing gear did not properly deploy, authorities said after the incident, praising the skills of the pilot who managed to land the plane in one piece.
A video presumed to be of the incident posted online showed the plane shooting sparks and flames at the moment of landing.
“Thanks to the pilot’s skill, it landed,” Pir Hossein Kolivand, Head of Iran’s Emergency Medical Services told reporters, noting that all 33 passengers managed to escape the crash-landed plane safely.
As the jet was circling around Tehran's Mehrabad airport, burning out excess fuel and desperately trying to resolve the landing gear glitch, emergency crews and at least ten ambulances were waiting for the Fokker 100 to make its emergency landing. Once the plane crash-landed, emergency crews swiftly put out the fire and assisted the passengers with the evacuations. “No one was injured and everyone is in good condition,” Tehran emergency chief confirmed.
While initially it was reported that around 100 passengers were on board the plane en route from Qeshm Island in the Persian Gulf to Iran's capital, the head of public relations at the Civil Aviation Organization later told IRIB news agency that the flight had only 24 passengers and nine crew members.
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