A heroic pilot saved the lives of 89 passengers and crew members by landing his plane without any front wheels after the aircraft’s landing gear failed to deploy.
Incredible video footage of the emergency landing shows the nose of the Myanmar Airlines plane hitting the runway, causing sparks to fly into the air as the front of the aircraft drags along the ground.
Many have praised the actions of the plane’s Burmese captain, who dumped his fuel before landing to reduce the weight of the aircraft.
No-one was injured in flight UB-103’s touchdown in Mandalay, Myanmar, on Sunday, which became the second flight to encounter problems in the country in less than a week.
Ye Htut Aung, deputy director general of Myanmar’s Civil Aviation Department, told AFP: “They tried hard twice by flying around twice and asked to check whether the nose wheel dropped or not.
“So they had to land with the back wheels… The pilot could land it skillfully. There were no casualties.”
The Daily Mail reports that the pilot, who initiated an emergency procedure to bring the wheels down, flew by the airport’s control tower twice to find out whether the Embraer-190’s front tyres had deployed.
Flights at Mandalay International Airport were suspended after the incident, although this measure was lifted for smaller aircraft after two hours.
Footage has emerged of smoke rising up around passengers’ legs inside the aircraft, followed by people strolling off the plane and across the runway in a remarkably relaxed manner.
Passenger Soe Moe told AFP: “Smoke came out a little when we landed… All passengers are okay.”
Another accident happened at Myanmar’s Yangon International Airport on Wednesday, when a Biman Bangladesh Airplanes flight crashed and ran off the runway in a storm, causing 11 injuries.