PIA plane crashes in Karachi with 107 onboard


KARACHI, Pakistan: People arrive at the site of a passenger plane crash here Friday. Photo courtesy of H.Khan – Anadolu Agency.

KARACHI, May 22 (NNN-BERNAMA-ANADOLU) — A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) plane with 107 passengers and crew onboard crashed in the southern port city of Karachi on Friday, officials and local media reported.

The flight PK-8303, travelling from northeastern Lahore city crashed near Jinnah International Airport while landing, the Civil Aviation Authority confirmed in a statement, Turkey’s Anadolu Agency (AA) reported.

There was no immediate word on casualties, however, an official who chose anonymity, told Anadolu Agency that “many” are feared dead.

Rescue sources said two bodies, including that of a child, have been pulled out of the wreckage.

The crash occurred days after resumption of domestic flights following lifting of a month-long lockdown imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Abdullah, the PIA spokesman, told reporters that it would be early to comment on the possible causes of the crash.

“The plane was not old, and [was] well-maintained,” he said.

Footage aired on local broadcaster Geo News showed clouds of smoke billowing upwards from the burning wreckage of the ill-fated plane. Several vehicles also caught fire.

AA report said the plane fell on a residential area damaging several houses, and vehicles.

Honking ambulances, and fire brigade vehicles were seen rushing to the scene, where crowds of area residents already gathered.

Army, and police personnel also reached the site to assist the rescue operation as narrow streets hampered the movement of rescue vehicles.

A PIA plane had crashed on the foothills of northwestern Chitral city, killing all 48 passengers onboard in December 2016.

— NNN-BERNAMA-ANADOLU