Mexico passenger jet crashes after takeoff, all on board survive

Officials say 103 people on board survive with at least 85 people injured in the accident in northern Durango state.

    Smoke billows above the site where an Aeromexico-operated Embraer passenger jet crashed in Durango [Francisco Javier Castrellon/via Reuters]
    Smoke billows above the site where an Aeromexico-operated Embraer passenger jet crashed in Durango [Francisco Javier Castrellon/via Reuters]

    An Aeromexico passenger jet has crashed after taking off in Mexico's northern state of Durango, but the state's governor said there have been no deaths.

    The Mexico City-bound Embraer 190 jet was almost full, with 103 on board including two infants and four crew members, when it came down at around 4pm (21:00 GMT) on Tuesday, authorities said. Passengers and crew jumped to safety before the plane was engulfed in flames.

    It made an emergency landing about 10km from the state capital's airport shortly after taking off, Alejandro Cardoza, a spokesman for the state civil protection agency, said on local television.

    Cardoza said in an interview that around 85 people had been injured in the crash, some seriously, adding that a fire resulting from the accident had been put out and there were no reports of burn victims.

    "Many managed to leave the plane on foot," he said.

    Durango Governor Jose Aispuro wrote in his Twitter account that "it is confirmed there were no fatalities in the accident," adding that the aeroplane was hit by a gust of wind as it left the runway.

    The operator of Durango airport, Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte, attributed the crash to bad weather conditions, citing preliminary reports.

    "It really was the great escape for those on board the plane in Mexico that crashed just after it had taken off. When you see the pictures of the plane post-crash with flames coming out of it, it really is incredible that nobody was killed on impact."

    Passengers asked for help

    Al Jazeera's John Holman, reporting from the capital Mexico City, said that some of the passengers were able to walk to the nearest motorway to ask for help following the crash. 

    "Ambulances then turned up and took injured people to nearby hospitals, with some of them suffering from burns and others from other injuries," he also said.

    "Authorities have already started investigations into what exactly happened. What we do know so far is that the plane was trying to take off in really bad weather."

    TV images showed the severely damaged body of the plane emerging from scrubland and a column of smoke rising into the sky.

    Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto wrote on Twitter that he had instructed the ministries of defence, civil protection and transportation to respond to the crash.

    SOURCE: News agencies


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