SANTA MARIA, COSTA RICA – A DHL Boeing 757-200 cargo aircraft skidded off the runway on Thursday during an emergency landing at Juan Santamaria International Airport separating the tail, Reuters reports. The accident was filmed by airport staff and airport restaurant guests. Both pilots of the aircraft were uninjured.
Less than an hour before the accident Thursday morning, the aircraft had taken off from Costa Rica Airport for a flight to Guatemala City. Due to a technical problem – probably a malfunction of the hydraulic system – it had to return to Santa Maria, where the 22-year-old Boeing 757 made an emergency landing at 10:00 AM local time.
Footage of the accident show what initially appeared to be a smooth landing, but as soon as the pilot activated the brakes things went terribly wrong when it made a sudden turn to the right, resulting in the aircraft rolling off the adjacent slope at a relatively low speed.
The impact caused a fire, but was extinguished quickly by the airport fire brigade who was already at the site. The two pilots, the only people on board the aircraft, were unharmed. According to DHL – part of Deutsche Post AG – one crew member was undergoing a medical review as a precaution.
Juan Santamaria Airport was closed on Thursday afternoon immediately after the accident, but has since reopened at 3:30 PM.
Head image: Alerta News on Twitter
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