İrem UZUN -TDO- At least 16 people were killed and 123 others wounded when a passenger jet skidded off the runway after landing in heavy rain in the southern state of Kerala, officials have said. "Unfortunately, 16 people have lost their lives. I offer my condolences to their next of kin and pray for speedy recovery of the injured," Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said in a tweet.
The Air India Express flight from Dubai was repatriating Indians stranded overseas amid the coronavirus pandemic. "There are 174 passengers, 10 infants, 2 pilots, 4 cabin crew on board the aircraft," the statement said, adding that "no fire reported at the time of landing." Images from the scene showed a broken fuselage with pieces of the plane scattered across what appears to be a field, as well as people searching through the debris. Puri told that amid bad weather conditions the pilot had tried to land earlier, but then did a turnaround.
A formal investigation into the crash will be conducted by the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB), Puri told CNN. In his message on Twitter, he said two investigation teams of professionals from Air India, Airports Authority of India and AAIB will leave for Kerala early on Saturday.