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Mangled Remains Of Aircraft Is All Left Of AI Flight

Mangalore: A Boeing 737-800 on fire, its mangled parts spread wide across, rescue workers running towards ambulances with injured and fire fighters trying to douse thick plumes of smoke billowing out of the aircraft.   The
PTI May 22, 2010 12:39 IST
PTI
Mangalore: A Boeing 737-800 on fire, its mangled parts spread wide across, rescue workers running towards ambulances with injured and fire fighters trying to douse thick plumes of smoke billowing out of the aircraft.   

The scene at the air crash site here resembled a war zone this morning with a large number of rescue workers and locals trying hard to bring the flames in control and save the lives of those injured.   

The entire area around Kenjar village near the crash site and the airport has been cordoned off. An eyewitness said the bodies of passengers were strewn everywhere near Kenjar Gudda, a hillock.  



The locality reverberated with sirens of ambulances and fire tenders as rescue workers pulled out charred bodies and badly injured victims, including children and women. The injured were rushed to hospitals.   

The Air India flight IX-892, operated by a Boeing 737-800, had 160 passengers, and 6 crew members on board when the aircraft overshot the runway, hit the fence and went beyond the boundary wall of the airport.   

A senior official said the aircraft broke into pieces. "The location of crashed aircraft was not easily accessible," he said.  

About 150 CISF personnel, airport officials and fire service personnel along with civilians could be seen desperately searching for survivors down the hillock from where the aircraft fell.  



Amidst all the gloom, there was a glimmer of hope as a fireman was seen taking a child in his arms and climbing the slope to rush to the ambulance.

Firemen were immediately pressed into action as soon as the aircraft crashed. But thick smoke made the rescue efforts difficult for them.  Even as time passed by, a fear of huge loss of lives clearly could be seen lurking among the rescue workers and locals present at the crash site.  

All that was visible amidst trees and shrubs was the white foam covering remains of the horrific crash. In times of such crash, instead of water, the firemen use DCP (Dicalcium Phosphate Powder) and foam to control it.  Sumit Ameen, an eyewitness said, rains in the morning created problems for the rescue workers.  

"There were rains in the morning in this forest area and it affected the rescue operations," he said.   

A large number of locals had gathered at the spot.  Chandrasekar, another local, said they could not rescue many passengers as by the time they reached the spot, many were dead.  

"We saw some people managing to come out of the mangled remains. We rushed them to hospitals," he said.

At Mangalore hospitals, doctors and nurses were busy attending the victims as ambulances kept rushing in with passengers of the ill-fated flight.  

An eyewitness said the bodies of passengers lay strewn  near Kenjar Gudda, a hillock.  

TV footage showed one woman survivor being taken in a stretcher to a local hospital.  

The six crew members who have been identified were Capt Z Glusica, an expat pilot and commander of the aircraft, Capt S S Ahluwalia, the co-pilot, Yugantar, Mohd Ali, Tejal and Sujata, all cabin crew.