A major Philippine airport has been closed after a Korean Air plane was damaged when it overshot a runway in heavy rain.
No injuries were reported among the 162 passengers and 11 crewmembers who escaped from the aircraft using emergency slides.
Dozens of flights have been cancelled and Mactan-Cebu International Airport, one of the country’s busiest, was closed due to the stuck aircraft at the end of its lone usable runway.
The incident prompted a public apology from Korean Air’s president and a vow from one of Asia’s most prominent airlines to take steps to prevent a recurrence.
“We always prioritize safety in all of our operations, and we truly regret the stress and inconvenience brought to our passengers,” Korean Air President Woo Keehong said.
The front underbelly of the plane was sheared off and its nose was heavily damaged. The plane lay tipped forward on a grassy area with its front landing wheel not visible and emergency slides deployed at the doors.
A ripped-open hole was also visible at the top of the plane near a front door.
Philippine officials said the plane’s remaining fuel would be siphoned off before efforts begin to remove the aircraft. Authorities were also assessing if the other aircraft that are stranded at the airport could be allowed to fly out safely.
Dozens of flights to and from Cebu province were cancelled, including those of flag carrier Philippine Airlines, which initially announced more than 50 cancelled domestic flights.
A Philippine investigation of the accident was under way.
The Airbus A330 flying from Incheon, South Korea, attempted to land twice before overrunning the runway on the third attempt, Korean Air Lines said.
“All passengers are safe and being attended by ground personnel,” the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines said.
In 1981, A Korean Air Lines Boeing 747 jetliner overshot the runway while taking off from Manila’s international airport and skidded to a stop at the edge of a major highway. The accident injured more than a dozen of about 350 people onboard.
The plane hit a concrete fence and skidded to a halt on its belly with its front section frighteningly protruding over a busy side road of a key highway south of Manila.
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