American Airlines crash in Jamaica: no serious injuries
An American Airlines flight 331 from Miami with more than 150 aboard overshot a runway in Jamiaca. Some 44 people were taken to nearby hospitals but American Airlines said only two were admitted to the hospital, and nobody suffered life-threatening injuries.
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
Flight 331 lurched down the runway of Norman Manley International Airport in the Jamaican capital Tuesday night. Crews evacuated the passengers, who had to walk along a beach in the rain to board buses to reach the terminal.
Some 44 people were taken to nearby hospitals with broken bones and back pains, Information Minister Daryl Vaz told The Associated Press.
Four people were seriously injured, said Paul Hall, senior vice president of airport operations. But American Airlines said only two were admitted to the hospital and nobody suffered life-threatening injuries.
The plane’s fuselage was cracked, both engines broke off from the impact, and the left main landing gear collapsed, American Airline spokesman Tim Smith said. Most of the injuries were cuts and bruises, and none were life threatening, he said.
US federal investigators will analyze whether the plane should have been landing in such bad weather, Mr. Smith said, adding that other planes landed safely amid heavy rain.
Some passengers leaving the plane were seen with cuts on their faces or bloody lips. Some looked visibly shaken as they left the terminal wrapped in red blankets. Others ducked under umbrellas to escape the heavy downpour. Passenger Robert Mais told The Gleaner newspaper of Jamaica that he could hear the engine’s reverse throttle but that the plane didn’t seem to slow as it skittered down the runway.
He said he felt rain coming through the roof of the darkened jet after the impact and that baggage from the overhead compartments was scattered throughout the cabin. “Some (passengers) were shaken up badly,” he told the paper. The plane was about 10 to 15 feet (3 to 5 meters) from the Caribbean Sea at that point, and passengers walked along the beach to be picked up by a bus, Mais said.