Philippine Mactan airport partially reopens for domestic as well as international flight services after a near-tragic accident over the weekend, reports PTI.
Korean Air plane stuck in the grass near the runway
Despite the damaged Korean Air plane stuck in the grass around the runway after a near-tragic accident over the weekend, the Philippines international airport authorities have decided to partially reopen the airport to commence domestic and international flight services to assist ease the large numbers of revoked commercial flights and stranded passengers due to the Korean Air mishap Sunday night.
The airport on Mactan Island in Cebu province, the country’s 2nd busiest, is reopening from sunrise to sunset. The Airbus A330 flying from Incheon, South Korea, carrying 173 people, attempted to land twice before overrunning the runway on the 3rd attempt in rainy weather, a Korean Air Lines Co. report read.
Korean Air and Philippine authorities said
The 162 passengers and eleven crew members escaped through emergency slides without any reports of serious injuries, Korean Air and Philippine authorities said. But more than 100 international and domestic flights have been revoked since the accident due to the stuck aircraft, which authorities expect to tow away from a grassy place at the end of the runway later Tuesday at the earliest.
Philippine civil aviation officials
Philippine civil aviation officials told the unaffected part of Mactan airport’s only usable runway could be reopened to flights during the daytime when visibility is good after it was cleared of debris from Sunday’s accident.
The front underbelly of the aircraft was sheared off and its nose was heavily damaged. The aircraft lay tipped forward on a grassy area with its front landing wheel not visible and emergency slides deployed at the doors.
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A ripped-open, gash-like hole was also visible at the top of the aircraft above a front door. Philippine officials said Monday the plane’s remaining fuel would be siphoned off before efforts begin to remove the aircraft at the runway’s end.
Korean Air President Woo Keehong said
The terrifying close call 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 stated in a statement.
A Philippine investigation was underway to determine the cause of the accident, including why the pilot was permitted and proceeded to land despite the rainy climate.
Other aircraft managed to land safely in the same weather shortly before the Korean Air plane touched down, a Philippine aviation official told.
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