Tyre burst grounds AI plane at Delhi airport

Over 140 passengers of Air India Delhi - Bagdogra flight (AI 879) had a harrowing time on Monday.

September 07, 2015 03:36 pm | Updated November 16, 2021 04:14 pm IST - NEW DELHI:

Passengers of an Air India Khajuraho-Varanasi-Delhi (AI 405) flight had a narrow escape on Monday after the plane made an emergency landing due to a technical snag. Though sources said the aircraft caught fire after landing, the airline denied any such report.

The plane made an emergency landing on runway 27 of Indira Gandhi International Airport and some passengers reportedly suffered injuries during evacuation.

The Air India Khajuraho-Varanasi-Delhi flight took off from Varanasi at 6.25 pm for the last leg of its journey to Delhi with 146 passengers on board, apart from the crew members. On the way, the pilot detected a technical snag in the undercarriage of the aircraft due to a hydraulic leak in the nose wheel part. The pilot informed Delhi Air Traffic Control (ATC) and requested for a priority landing.

As emergency was sounded, all precautionary measures were taken at the airport with the private airport developer, Delhi International Airport Ltd. (DIAL), deploying fire fighting units and vehicles, apart from medical aid facilities near the runway.

The aircraft landed safely on runway 27 around 8 pm. After landing, the rear tyre of the aircraft burst emanating smoke and the pilot opted for emergency exit of passengers, sources said.

The aircraft’s evacuation chutes (inflatable slides) were deployed for the passengers to slide down. However, during the evacuation, some senior passengers suffered injuries and bruises, sources at the airport said. The five injured passengers were taken to a hospital in Gurgaon for medical aid, the sources said. The airline, however, denied any passenger being injured in the incident.

The aircraft’s wheels were doused with water by the airport’s fire fighting team. Sources at the airport said no fire was detected after the aircraft landed.

“Air India flight AI405 Varanasi-Delhi had an emergency landing due to hydraulic leak. This resulted in few sparks at the nose wheel. There was no fire,” said an Air India spokesperson. “All 146 passengers were evacuated safely and taken to the terminal building. No passenger was injured. Runway 27 has now been cleared. All passengers are being served dinner and taken care of,” the spokesperson said.

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