Passengers safe after crash-landing
An Emirates flight from India with 300 people on board crash-landed at Dubai's main airport yesterday, sending black smoke billowing into the air and halting all flights at the Middle East's busiest airport. A firefighter died while responding to the blaze, but none of the passengers or crew on board were killed.
The accident was the most serious ever for Emirates, which has grown at a breakneck pace over the last three decades and turned its hometown of Dubai into a major long-haul international air hub. It was the second major air disaster for a Dubai government-backed airline in less than five months.
Speaking to reporters in Dubai, Emirates Group CEO and Chairman Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said 10 people were hospitalised after the incident, but stressed that all passengers were safely evacuated before the plane was engulfed in a fireball. He said one firefighter died trying to put out the fire.
The Boeing 777-300 was carrying 282 passengers and 18 crew members from 20 different countries, according to the airline. Those on-board included 226 Indians, 24 Britons, 11 Emiratis, and six each from the United States and Saudi Arabia.
"Our main priority at this time is the safety and well-being of all involved, and full co-operation is being extended to the authorities and emergency services managing the situation," Emirates said.