A passenger plane carrying 98 people crashed in a residential area of the Pakistani city of Karachi on Friday. Pakistan International Airlines reported that flight PK 8303 landed with 91 passengers and 7 crew members.
There was no official word on the death toll, but the Pakistani leader offered his condolences to the “families of the dead.”
Karachi Mayor Vassim Akhtar was quoted as saying by reporters at the scene that everyone on board had died in the crash, but national government officials said at least two people on the plane had died. thought they had survived,
Part of the confusion is probably between casualties among people on the ground when the plane crashed – it destroyed five or six houses – and those on board the plane.
Maria Usman told CBS News that a PIA Airbus A320 collided in a neighborhood called Ginnah Gardens, near the port city of Karachi airport.
An airport source told CBS News that the pilot had informed the control tower that one of the plane’s two engines had not been damaged. The control tower told the pilot that two runways were clear for landing, but air traffic control lost communication with the crew and the plane crashed shortly after. Witnesses say they saw an engine before the plane landed.
Rescue efforts were underway and a Pakistani Interior Ministry official told CBS News that there were survivors, but the number could not be confirmed and it was unclear whether he meant the people who were on the ground or on the plane during the catastrophe.
A video shared online by Pakistan’s GEO television showed an emergency team trying to reach the scene through the rubble, with flames still visible in the background. Others showed huge clouds of black smoke swirling between the densely packed buildings in the residential area.
Abdul Satar Hohar, a spokesman for the country’s aviation authority, confirmed that the flight was to Karachi from Lahore. The Associated Press quoted witnesses as saying the Airbus A320 appeared to have attempted to land at least several times before crashing into a residential area near Karachi International Airport.
The crash came just days after the country began allowing commercial flights to resume after planes were grounded during a blockade over,,
It also comes as Pakistanis across the country prepare to celebrate the end of Ramadan and the beginning of the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr, with many traveling back home to towns and villages.
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has sent his condolences to the victims of the crash on Twitter, promising an immediate investigation into the disaster.
Pakistan has checked military and civilian aviation safety data, with frequent plane and helicopter crashes over the years.
In 2016, a Pakistan International Airlines plane exploded in flames after one of its two turboprop engines failed while flying from the far north to Islamabad, killing more than 40 people.
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