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The BBC's Kim Barnes
"Witnesses described seeing the wing scrape the tarmac"
 real 56k

The BBC's Kevin Bouquet
"The starboard undercarriage collapsed"
 real 56k

Thursday, 10 May, 2001, 16:06 GMT 17:06 UK
Passengers in Liverpool plane drama
Map
The flight was from Palma in Mallorca
All 45 passengers on board a plane have escaped without serious injury after its undercarriage failed on landing at Liverpool airport.

The undercarriage of the aircraft, which was en route from Palma on the Spanish holiday island of Mallorca, collapsed as it landed at 1330BST on Thursday at Liverpool's Speke airport.

It is understood all the 45 passengers and six crew were evacuated safely. Some were treated by paramedics in the main terminal building, but none were said to have been taken to hospital.


The wing had dropped on to the floor and there was smoke billowing out from under the plane

Steve Gilford
Eyewitness
An airport spokeswoman said: "The accident happened when the starboard undercarriage of Spanair flight number JKK3203 collapsed as it landed and the plane wobbled on to one wing."

Eight appliances from Merseyside Fire Service, seven ambulances and a major incident team were sent to the airport and the Royal Liverpool and Whiston hospitals were alerted.

A spokesman for Mersey Regional Ambulance said: "Some of the passengers were treated in the airport terminal but luckily nobody was seriously hurt."

Eyewitness Jackie Sinclair, 30, said: "We had been watching the planes land and were just relaxing waiting for our flight when there was a massive crash.

"The plane touched down and its wing scraped along the Tarmac. There was loads of smoke coming out of the undercarriage but no sparks."

'Frightened'

All flights to and from Liverpool were cancelled after the incident.

Steve Gilford, 26, who was waiting to fly to Spain with wife Jane and nine-year-old daughter Jodie, said they heard a deafening crash as they waited in the terminal building.

He said he looked out of the window and added: "The wing nearest to us had dropped on to the floor and there was smoke billowing out from under the plane.

"The fire brigade arrived and they were evacuating the passengers down an inflatable shute from the door next to the cockpit.

"They looked extremely frightened and shocked but everyone was orderly and there was no hysteria."

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