At Peru’s main airport, a jet that was taking off collided with a fire truck, killing two firefighters instantly. Just before 15:30 (20:30 GMT) on Friday at Jorge Chávez International Airport in the nation’s capital, Lima, a Latam Airlines plane crashed with a vehicle.
Social media videos show the plane veering down the runway, catching fire, and smoking before coming to a stop. The airline said on Twitter that no passengers nor flight crew were killed.
An executive director of the hospital organisation EsSalud claims that a 31-year-old firefighter is in a critical state. According to Peru’s Ministry of Health, twenty passengers are being treated for injuries, and two are considered severe.
It is still unknown why the fire vehicle drove onto the runway as the plane was preparing to take off for Juliaca, a city in southern Peru. According to Latam CEO Manuel Van Oordt at a press conference, the flight has been given the go-ahead to take off.
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He stated, “We don’t know why [the fire engine] was there. “We didn’t request their assistance.”
🇵🇪 | URGENTE: Se incendia un avión de Latam al momento del aterrizaje en el aeropuerto internacional Jorge Chávez de Lima.
— Alerta News 24 (@AlertaNews24) November 18, 2022
According to Reuters, the prosecutor’s office declared that it was looking into the incident for possible manslaughter. According to Lima Airport Partners (LAP), which manages the airport, Flights at Jorge Chavez Airport have been halted through Saturday afternoon.
International aircraft diversions have been to Colombia, Panama, and some Peruvian destinations, including Iquitos, Pisco, and Arequipa. “At this time, we are researching and investigating all the required aspects that could explain the source of this,” LAP stated.
On social media, President Pedro Castillo praised the firefighters. He remarked on Twitter, “I send my sincere condolences to the family members of heroic firefighters Nicolás Santa Gadea and ngel Torres. “They are in my prayers and thoughts. I make a prayer for the wounded to get better.”