New Delhi / Thiruvananthapuram:
A special assistance team from Air India reached Kerala to coordinate relief and counseling for the families of the 190 people who were on board the Air India Express flight from Dubai which crashed at the airport in Dubai. Kerala Friday evening. Eighteen people, including the two pilots, were killed after the Boeing 737 skidded off the runway and shattered into pieces during an attempted landing at Kozhikode airport.
The special assistance team, called the “Angels of Air India”, was flown from Mumbai to coordinate relief and advise injured passengers as well as family members of injured and deceased passengers, Air India Express said. .
“Two special relief flights have been organized from Delhi and one from Mumbai to provide humanitarian aid to all passengers and their families,” Air India Express said in a statement.
“The President and CEO of Air India, the CEO of Air India Express, the COO as well as the Chief Flight Safety Officer of Air India have already reached Calicut,” he said. indicated.
The pilots of the Boeing 737 aborted two landings due to downwind and circled the airport several times before the final landing, which saw the aircraft overshoot the runway and roll 35 feet down. Kozhikode Airport has a tabletop runway, one of which sits atop a plateau or hill with one or both ends adjacent to a steep precipice that drops into a deep gorge.
The airport sits on a hill and several international airlines had stopped flying larger planes, including Boeing 777s and Airbus A330s, to Kozhikode due to safety concerns along the length of the runway.
“According to the weather radar, the approach was for runway 28, but as the pilots were having difficulty they made two roundabouts and came from the opposite side on runway 10 and the plane crashed,” said ANI news agency quoting an investigator from the Civil Aviation Authority. (DGCA) as said.
Air India Express flight IX-1344 from Dubai to Calicut was operating as part of the Vande Bharat mission to repatriate Indians stranded abroad due to coronavirus lockdowns. Air India Express, a 100% subsidiary of Air India, has only B-737s in its fleet.
There were 184 passengers on the plane, including 10 babies and 4 cabin crew. Many of the passengers were workers returning home after losing their jobs due to the pandemic.