A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) passenger plane, with an estimated 99 people onboard, crashed in Karachi’s Model Colony near Jinnah International Airport on Friday, Dawn News reported.
Sindh health officials have said that so far, 60 people have been confirmed dead. It is, however, unclear if the deceased were all onboard the flight or include area residents as well where the crash took place. Two people are confirmed to have survived the crash, according to officials.
PIA spokesperson Abdullah Hafeez said that the A320 Airbus was carrying 91 passengers and 8 crew members from Lahore to Karachi on PK 8303. Eyewitnesses said the Airbus A320 appeared to attempt to land two or three times before crashing in a residential area near the airport.
“The aeroplane first hit a mobile tower and crashed over houses,” witness Shakeel Ahmed said near the site, just a few kilometres short of the airport, according to Reuters.
Footage showed plumes of smoke rising from the site of the crash within the congested residential area. Ambulances and rescue officials arrived at the scene to help residents. Eyewitnesses told DawnNewsTV that the plane was on fire in the air before crashing.
As per the reports, Flight PK-8303 from Lahore was about to land in Karachi when it crashed at the Jinnah Garden area near Model Colony in Malir, minutes before its landing.
The pilot of a crashed Pakistan International Airlines jet sent a Mayday and told controllers the aircraft had lost power from both its engines on its second attempt to land, according to a recording posted on monitoring website liveatc.net, NDTV report said.