Plane Skids Off Runway in Istanbul, Injuring at Least 52 People

Plane Skids Off Runway in Istanbul, Injuring at Least 52 People

A plane skidded off the runway on Wednesday at Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen airport, breaking apart and injuring dozens, the authorities said.

The Transportation Ministry said in an initial statement that there were injuries, and Gov. Ali Yerlikaya of Istanbul said on Twitter that 52 people had been taken to hospitals, adding that the plane was still being evacuated.

The plane had 171 passengers and six crew members on board, according to Turkish news reports, and the airport shut down and diverted flights to Istanbul’s other international airport. It was raining heavily at the time of the episode.

Turkish news media showed video of the plane having broken into at least two pieces, with a clear break near the front of the plane — the nose appeared to be detached — and a large crack in its midsection. The video showed people climbing out of the rear opening and onto one of the plane’s wings.

Other videos appeared to show flames on part of the aircraft, and rescue workers trying to get into the plane.

In 2018, a Pegasus Airlines passenger plane made a heart-stopping skid off the runway, ending up halfway down a steep slope at a perilous angle, just feet from the Black Sea. No passengers or crew members were seriously injured in that episode, officials said.

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