5 dead, 1 critical after Japan Airlines plane collides with coast guard aircraft

5 dead, 1 critical after Japan Airlines plane collides with coast guard aircraft
via NHK WORLD-JAPAN, BBC News

Investigation into the cause of the collision continues, but JAL officials say their plane had landed normally

January 2, 2024
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A Japan Airlines (JAL) plane carrying hundreds of passengers burst into flames after colliding with a Japan Coast Guard aircraft at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport on Tuesday.
What happened: The fire, which was caught on video, occurred after the collision took place at 5:47 p.m., Tokyo time. The exact cause of the crash remains under investigation, but preliminary reports say the pilots of the JAL Airbus A350-900 did not notice any aircraft on the runway before landing.
“I felt a boom like we had hit something and jerked upward the moment we landed,” one passenger told Kyodo News. “I saw sparks outside the window and the cabin filled with gas and smoke.”
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Casualties: The incident resulted in the deaths of five crew members on the coast guard’s De Havilland Canada DHC-8, which had been preparing to depart for Niigata to aid earthquake relief efforts. Meanwhile, all 379 passengers — including eight children under age 2 and 12 crew members — on JAL Flight 516 were safely evacuated, though 17 reportedly sustained injuries.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said authorities are working to ensure that the incident does not impede earthquake relief efforts. The coast guard aircraft was reportedly one of four planes headed to help the earthquake site.
What’s next: Police are expected to investigate whether the incident involved professional negligence. For their part, officials with the JAL — which was named the world’s best airline of 2023 — maintain that their plane had landed normally and received clearance from aviation authorities.
The Japan Coast Guard is also conducting its own investigation. The pilot of their involved aircraft is reportedly in critical condition.
 
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      Carl Samson

      Carl Samson
      is a Senior Editor for NextShark

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