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Geordie Ahmed
3rd August 2005, 03:00
Flames have engulfed an Air France airliner at Pearson airport in Toronto, Canada, after it skidded off a runway while landing in bad weather. The aircraft, which could have had up to 200 people aboard, was still ablaze well over an hour after the crash.

There is no word on casualties among the passengers or crew of Flight 358 from Paris to Toronto.

Television footage shows the plane, an A340, burning fiercely with thick black smoke billowing out.

The accident took place in heavy rain near Highway 401, one of Canada's busiest motorways.

Emergency vehicles are at the scene with firefighters directing a stream of water at the wreckage.

Lightning

It appears that the plane crashed through barriers at 1550 local time (1950 GMT) and fell into a small ravine, tail in the air.


According to CBC, most operations had been grounded at the airport at the time because of severe thunderstorms.

"There was quite a downpour," CBC journalist John Finday said.

"The visibility was really bad, with lots of lightning."

The A340 has an excellent safety record with no crashes reported before Tuesday, aircraft expert David Learmount told the BBC.

"Modern airliners are like that. They don't have accidents. If this one has had an accident it's the first."


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Lets hope there are no casualties BUT its not looking good

Bitman
3rd August 2005, 03:18
I hope its a one-off!

catwoman
3rd August 2005, 03:22
Hopefully there are no causalties!

Bitman
3rd August 2005, 03:24
Hopefully there are no causalties!

I'm not too optimistic! :|

catwoman
3rd August 2005, 03:56
I hope Pakistanis won't be blamed for this. :P

Bitman
3rd August 2005, 04:18
I hope Pakistanis won't be blamed for this. :P

You never know nowadays! :15:

Geordie Ahmed
3rd August 2005, 04:52
An Air France plane has skidded off a runway and burst in flames at Toronto's Pearson airport, but all 309 people aboard survived, officials say. They said 14 people aboard the Airbus A340 were treated for minor injuries.

Flight 358 from Paris burned for more than two hours after the crash landing in bad weather.

The accident took place in heavy rain near Highway 401, one of Canada's busiest motorways, and emergency vehicles raced to the scene.

Team Slayer
3rd August 2005, 06:22
OH MAN! What a disaster! Stupid thing crashed right near the place where I work (about a 5-min drive from there)...and then they closed off a large part of the 401 (ALL Westbound lanes from the crash-site onwards) and a lot the 427 lanes...it was terrible...all the traffic diverted to the smaller streets which were PACKED bumper to bumper...all the alternate highway routes (407, etc.) PACKED...on top of that, wet roads! not fun i tell ya! A trip from office to home usually takes 30-35 mins...today it was 2 hours!!! Literally paralysed the entire city.

Thankfully, no one died. Kudos to the Pearson Airport people and the crew on the plane!

Team Slayer
3rd August 2005, 06:25
and btw I went outside for a break at around 4ish...it was POURING, like that of a storm...plus the thunder and lightening were going on since noon...and at the time of the incident, the speed of the wind was 100 freakin km/hr!

zushy_786
3rd August 2005, 06:28
and btw I went outside for a break at around 4ish...it was POURING, like that of a storm...plus the thunder and lightening were going on since noon...and at the time of the incident, the speed of the wind was 100 freakin km/hr!

Woa pretty nasty weather in Toronto..Hopefully it isn't like that next week, when I'm flying in Toronto next week :10:

Bitman
3rd August 2005, 06:31
Good news that there were no casualties.

zushy_786
3rd August 2005, 06:34
Only minor injuries as plane skids off runway, catches fire in Toronto

Last Updated Tue, 02 Aug 2005 20:17 EDT CBC News (http://www.cbc.ca/news/credit.html)
More than 300 passengers and crew on board an Air France flight escaped from a fiery wreck when their plane skidded off the runway on Tuesday afternoon at Toronto's Pearson Airport.

Only 24 people received minor injuries.

http://www.cbc.ca/gfx/pix/pearson_planetail050802.jpg
Rescue crews trying to extinguish the flames.
The plane, an Airbus A340-300 was en route from Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport and landed in Toronto at 4:03 p.m. ET. The weather at the time was severe, with high winds, heavy rain and lightning.




RELATED STORY: Everyone was 'running like crazy': passenger (http://www.cbc.ca/story/canada/national/2005/08/02/plane-passenger050802.html)
Air France flight 358 was full with 297 passengers - two more than maximum capacity for the airliner, according to the Airbus web site - along with 12 crew. The plane overshot the runway by more than 200 metres, coming to rest at the lip of a ravine at the end of the runway.

"We had a hell of a roller-coaster going down the ravine," Roel Bramar said. "All I could think of was 'Get off!'"

Apparently all the passengers managed to get off the stricken aircraft before the fire erupted.

Bramar, told CBC News that he saw lightning just as the plane landed in a torrential downpour at about 3:50 p.m.



YOUR SPACE: Send us your eyewitness accounts and photos


YOUR REACTION: Letters about the accident (http://www.cbc.ca/news/viewpoint/yourspace/airfrance_crash.html)
Canada's busiest airport was immediately closed down as the emergency rescue effort went into effect. Incoming traffic was diverted and departing flights were cancelled.

Commenting on the accident GTAA spokesman Steve Shaw said the reason for so few injuries was because of the speed and professionalism of everyone involved. "The aircraft was evacuated very rapidly, the emergency services responded very quickly," he said.

http://www.cbc.ca/gfx/pix/william_osler_health050802.jpg William Osler Health Centre
"We can confirm that 10 passengers are being treated at Etobicoke's emergency department at the present time. So far no passengers have been received at the Peel Memorial Hospital in Brampton," said Gillian Williams McLean, spokesperson for the nearby William Osler Health Centre.

The other 14 injured passengers, including a nine-month-old baby, were taken to other area hospitals.

Some of the passengers who escaped from the plane scrambled onto Highway 401, where cars stopped to pick them up and drove them to the airport.

Federal Transportation Minister Jean Lapierre said he was told by Defence Department officials that more than 200 people had died in the accident. It wasn't until he was on the ground in Iqaluit, Nunavut, that the confusion was cleared up.

"We're told that the plane probably landed a little late, and that's why it's off 200 metres from the runway. The weather was very severe at the time. But, having more than 300 people come out of that plane before it caught on fire is just a miracle," said Lapierre.

Shaw said Toronto's Pearson Airport is expected to return to normal by late Tuesday night, or early Wednesday morning.

Gasherbrum
3rd August 2005, 17:38
at first it did seem a lot worse than it turned out. full credit to the plane crew and pearson first response team. they do have to find out what the plane was doing trying to land under such conditions.
had to play host to a few guys who commute to the west end until traffic got a little better.

Bitman
3rd August 2005, 19:38
at first it did seem a lot worse than it turned out. full credit to the plane crew and pearson first response team. they do have to find out what the plane was doing trying to land under such conditions.
had to play host to a few guys who commute to the west end until traffic got a little better.

Planes always land in similar conditions! They have to find out what was done wrong! Whether the error was mchanical or human or a combination of both!

Gasherbrum
3rd August 2005, 19:41
the weather was terrible, many flights were diverted from landing during the day because of the bad weather. it just happened to be bad timing by the looks of it, the weather turned for the worse just as the plane began to land.

Bitman
3rd August 2005, 20:13
I understand but still pilots are trained for such situations and I'm sure if used properly the planes can cope with such conditions even though it'd be wiser to land when the weather is slightly better.