85 injured, 2 critically, after Aeromexico plane crashes at airport, officials say
Durango Civil Protection(NEW YORK) — Eighty-five people have been injured after an Aeromexico flight crashed while en route to Mexico City, according to government officials.
Flight 2431 was taking off at the General Guadalupe Victoria International Airport in the northwest Mexican state of Durango Tuesday afternoon when it crashed, according to Durango state Governor José Rosas Aispuro Torres.
There have been no reported deaths following the crash, according to Aeromexico and the Durango governor.
“It is confirmed that there were no deaths following the accident of flight Aeromexico 2431,” Aispuro Torres wrote on Twitter. “At this moment on behalf of the cabinet, led by Coordinator Rosario Castro, to attend to the injured and cooperate with airport authorities with what has occurred.”
Two passengers were injured critically, Fernando Rios, a spokesperson for Durango’s State Coordination of Civil Protection said on Mexican television.
The Durango governor said a gust of wind hit the plane shortly after take-off, which caused the jet to lose speed and hit the ground with its left wing, The Associated Press reported. The plane skidded into a field horizontally, which allowed for the escape slides to be activated, freeing the passengers and crew before they caught on fire, the governor told the AP.
The plane’s pilot is in serious condition with burns, he said.
Everyone who was on board the plane have been sent to local hospitals, a Durango Civil Protection spokesperson said. Some survivors were able to walk away from the crash to a nearby road.
“The scene that we can see here is approximately 1 kilometer from the end of the runway. We can say that the airplane was not even able to take off at the moment it was forced to land. We do not know if it was a mechanical failure,” Durango Civil Protection spokesperson Alejandro Cardoza said on Mexican television.
One person injured in the accident was the Very Rev. Esequiel Sanchez, director of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the Archdiocese of Chicago said in a statement obtained by ABC News. He was “alert and resting,” the diocese said, adding, “We pray for Fr. Sanchez and everyone affected by this plane crash.”
The plane was taking off when it tried to abort the takeoff due to bad weather, but it was too late, Aispuro Torres told reporters. The plane went down after the runway ended, Aispuro Torres said.
Weather reports showed scattered storms in the area at the time of the accident.
Aeromexico wrote on Twitter Wednesday just after 5 p.m. ET that it was aware of an “accident” in the northwest Mexican state of Durango.
There were 99 passengers and four crew members aboard the Embraer 190 plane. An earlier report of the passenger tally did not include two infants.
Photos posted by Durango Civil Protection show smoke rising from the apparent crash site, which was surrounded by first responders and emergency vehicles.
Although a fire broke out after the plane crashed, none of the injured appear to have suffered from burns, Alejandro Cardoza, a spokesperson for the Durango Civil Protection, said on Mexican television. The fire appears to be under control, Aispuro Torres told reporters.
Further details were not immediately available.
The E190 is often used for regional commercial flights around the world and is commonly used by U.S. carriers American Airlines and Jetblue.
Embraer, the plane’s manufacturer, said in a statement the company has sent technicians to the crash site and that it was “aware of the accident with an E190 aircraft operated by Aeroméxico, Flight AM2431, late this afternoon, during take-off from the General Guadalupe Victoria International Airport, in the city of Durango, en route to Mexico City. The aircraft, serial number 190-173, was delivered in May 2008. The Company stands ready to support the investigating authorities.”
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