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Plane Veers Off Runway in China and Catches Fire; 36 Injured

Plane Veers Off Runway in China and Catches Fire; 36 Injured

Thursday, 12 May, 2022 - 10:30
In this photo released by Xinhua News Agency, a passenger jet that veered off a runway during take-off and caught fire is seen in the aftermath in Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport in southwestern China's Chongqing Thursday, May 12, 2022. (Liu Chan/Xinhua via AP)

A Chinese passenger jet veered off the runway during takeoff and caught fire on Thursday, sending black smoke billowing into the air and injuring more than 30 people.

The Tibet Airlines flight with 122 people on board was departing from the southwestern city of Chongqing for a flight to Nyingchi in China's Tibet region.

Videos shared by state media showed the left side of the aircraft on fire as people who appeared to be passengers headed away from the scene. Fire trucks sprayed water on the plane. The accident happened at 8:09 a.m. (0009 GMT), Tibet Airlines said, according to The Associated Press.

The Airbus A319-115 jet had 113 passengers and nine flight crew on board, all of whom were evacuated. During the evacuation, 36 people were injured with sprains or scrapes, according to the southwest regional branch of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

“In the process of taking off, the flight crew discovered an abnormality with the aircraft and stopped the takeoff according to the procedures. The aircraft left the runway and caught fire after the engine hit the ground. Currently the fire has been put off," the aviation authorities said in a statement.

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