Two female Chineese died in the Boeing 777 jet crash at San Francisco International Airport on Saturday, Asiana confirmed. 181 people were taken to hospital. Early indications suggest the plane came in too short and hit the seawall at the airport.
The two Chinese teenagers were seated at the back of the aircraft, said Asiana, South Korea’s second largest carrier.
They are believed to be the first-ever fatalities in a Boeing 777 crash.
Altogether 181 people were taken to hospital, mostly with minor injuries.
There were 291 passengers and 16 crew on board, Asiana said. Nationalities on board included 141 Chinese, 77 South Koreans and 61 US citizens, the airline said. All of the passengers have now been accounted for.
The airline said mechanical problems did not cause the crash. “Currently we understand that there were no engine or mechanical problems,” Asiana chief executive Yoon Young-Doo told a news conference in Seoul.
Early indications suggest the plane came in too short and hit the seawall at the airport.
While the sequence of events remains unclear, it appeared the plane landed and then crashed on San Francisco International Airport’s Runway 28L, said Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Laura Brown. Footage of the scene showed debris strewn on the runway and smoke pouring from the jet, as fire crews sprayed a white fire retardant into gaping holes in the craft’s roof. One engine and the tail fin appeared to have broken away from the main wreckage.
A passenger on the Asiana airlines Boeing 777 jet that crashed while landing has released a photo he took with his mobile phone shortly after surviving the crash-landing at the San Francisco international Airport today. The passenger, David Eun wrote, “I just crash landed at SFO. Tail ripped off. Most everyone seems fine. I’m ok. Surreal…”