An Air India Express Boeing 737-800 (registration VT-AXH) skidded off the runway and shattered in two during a landing in heavy rain on runway 10 of Kozhikode airport on Friday around 19:40 local time. The pilot unsuccessfully tried to land earlier and then did a turnaround.
Air India Express flight IX1344 came from Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. It was a repatriation flight operated by the Indian government to transport Indian nationals during the coronavirus pandemic
There were 174 passengers, 10 infants, 2 pilots and 4 cabin crew onboard the aircraft. At least 16 people were killed in the crash, according to CV Anand, the Central Industrial Security Force’s Inspector General. Both pilots were among the dead. Another 46 people on board were seriously injured.
“The plane broke into two pieces and also did not catch fire. We do not expect a lot of casualties in this crash,” said an Air India official.
The accident happened at Kozhikode Calicut international airport, also known as Karipur Airport, in the state of Kerala (southern India).