Watch video: In Costa Rica, DHL cargo jet skids off runway, breaks in half

Smoke was billowing from the bright yellow plane of German logistics giant DHL as it ground to a halt, having slid off the runway when it spun and broke up around the rear wheels

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Friday, April 08, 2022, 09:33 AM IST
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DHL cargo jet breaks in half while making emergency landing at Costa Rica | AFP

A Boeing 757-200 cargo aircraft operated by DHL has made a dramatic emergency landing at Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaria international airport, skidded off the runway and broke in two, losing its tail.

Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaria International Airport was closed after the accident involving the Boeing 757-200 cargo aircraft, which saw a the pilot and co-pilot evacuated unharmed.

DHL, which is owned by Deutsche Post AG, said that “one crew member is undergoing medical checks as a precaution.”

Smoke was billowing from the bright yellow plane of German logistics giant DHL as it ground to a halt, having slid off the runway when it spun and broke up around the rear wheels.

Airport operator Aeris said that the crash impacted 57 commercial and cargo flights to and from the United States, Central America, Mexico, Canada and Europe, and 8,500 passengers.

The aircraft, which was heading to Guatemala, suffered a failure of its hydraulic system, causing the pilot to request an emergency landing back at the airport on the outskirts of San Jose shortly after take-off, according to Reuters.

DHL spokesman Daniel McGrath said the company was working with airport authorities to move the plane so flights could resume. He said an investigation would be conducted to determine the cause of the incident.

DHL is a subsidiary of Deutsche Post DHL Group.

Luis Miranda, deputy director of civil aviation for Costa Rica, said the plane had gone only about 35 miles from the airport when it requested permission to turn back from its planned flight to Guatemala City. He said the pilot and co-pilot were the only crew members aboard the plane, which was carrying only about 2½ hours worth of fuel. .

The airport administration said the crash would keep the airport closed to incoming and outgoing flights until at least 6 p.m. Some flights would be diverted to Daniel Oduber International Airport in Liberia, about 125 miles northwest of San Jose.

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