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Kozhikode plane crash: Flight was shaking, it was a nightmare, recount survivors

It all happened in a flash. Just when they thought they had reached home, their plane fell into a 35-feet gorge in pelting rain, survivors of the crash said on Saturday.

Updated: Aug 09, 2020 04:14 IST

By HTC and Agencies, Hindustan Times Thiruvananthpauram/Kozhikode

Those who survived the accident said chaos prevailed at the accident site as initially passengers could not gauge what happened. (PTI Photo)

Survivors of the Air India Express plane crash recounted on Saturday the horror and ordeal that unfolded as the aircraft with 190 people on board skidded off the runaway at the Kozhikode airport and broke into two, killing at least 18 people.

It all happened in a flash. Just when they thought they had reached home, their plane fell into a 35-feet gorge in pelting rain, survivors of the crash said on Saturday.

Also read: Hardeep Puri cautions against speculative observations on Kozhikode air crash

“We were happy when were about to touchdown and I told my wife that the rain was a welcome sign. But our joy was short-lived. Suddenly there were big jerks and the plane was filled with loud cries. I tumbled out of my seat and lost conscious. When I opened my eyes at the hospital, I was happy to see my wife. A pregnant woman, who was sitting beside us, was not so lucky,” said a person who did not want to be named.

Those who survived the accident said chaos prevailed at the accident site as initially passengers could not gauge what happened. “We did not realise what really happened other than the flight was shaking,” said Ramshad, who was undergoing treatment at a local hospital in Malappuram district. His wife and daughter escaped with minor injuries.



“As soon the flight crashed, the emergency door was opened and people jumped out to safety, another survivor said.

Vijaymohan, who escaped with minor injuries and is recovering in a private hospital, said he thought it was a nightmare. “I could see heaps of twisted metal spread around when I opened my eyes after the initial shock of the impact,” said Vijayamohan, a resident of nearby Malaparamba. His wife Jameema is admitted in the ICU. The couple had gone to Dubai in December to join their son but got held up due to the Covid-19 induced lockdown.

Also read| Kozhikode plane crash: Chaos, screams at accident site as locals rush to rescue

“It was a miracle we limited the damage. The local people were the first to reach the spot and they turned real heroes. They entered the aircraft risking their lives to save others. We have one aim, save maximum lives, and they played stellar role,” said Malappuram district collector K Gopalakrishnan.

Meanwhile, Air India Express said it would send three relief flights were to Kozhikode to assist passengers and their family members affected by the plane crash.

Air India chairman and managing director Rajiv Bansal, and Air India Express chief executive officer K Shyam Sundar have already reached Kozhikode, according to a statement.

“The Emergency Response Director is coordinating with all the agencies in Calicut (Kozhikode), Mumbai as well as Delhi, Dubai for effective emergency response. The AAIB (Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau), DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) & Flight Safety Departments have reached for investigating the accident,” AIE, a subsidiary of national carrier Air India said in a statement.

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