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Probe begins after Boeing 737 slides off runway into Florida river


Probe begins after Boeing 737 slides off runway into Florida river

(Reuters) – A staff of 16 federal investigators was touring to Jacksonville, Florida on Saturday after a Boeing jetliner with 143 folks on board slid off a runway right into a shallow river whereas attempting to land at a navy base throughout a thunderstorm, injuring 21 folks.

A Miami Air, Boeing 737 plane from Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, sits in shallow water of the St Johns River after it slid off the runway at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida, U.S., May 3, 2019. U.S. Navy/Senior Chief Mass Communication Specialist Monica R. Hopper/Handout by way of REUTERS

The Boeing 737-800 chartered by the U.S. navy was arriving from Naval Station Guantanamo Bay in Cuba with 136 passengers and 7 crew members when it slid into the St. Johns river on the finish of the runway at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, authorities mentioned.

No one was badly harm and the 21 folks taken to a hospital have been listed in good situation, the native sheriff’s workplace mentioned.

The National Transportation Safety Board mentioned on Twitter that 16 investigators have been arriving in Jacksonville on Saturday.

“NTSB staff has experience in plane operations, constructions, powerplants, human efficiency, climate, airports and different areas,” the company mentioned, including that it expects to transient the media later within the day.

The aircraft, chartered from Miami Air International, was making an attempt to land at about 9:40 p.m. native time amid thunder and lightning when it slid off the runway and got here to relaxation within the shallow water of the river, authorities and passengers mentioned.

The navy base is on the western financial institution of the St. Johns River about eight miles (12.87 km) south of central Jacksonville, about 350 miles (563.27 km) north of Miami.

Miami Air International is a constitution airline working a fleet of the Boeing 737-800, totally different from the 737 MAX eight plane that has been grounded following two deadly crashes involving that aircraft.

Representatives of the airline didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark.

A spokesman for Boeing Co. mentioned that the corporate was conscious of the incident and was gathering data.

The constitution firm is contracted by the navy for its twice-weekly “rotator” roundtrip service between the U.S. mainland and Guantanamo Bay, mentioned Bill Dougherty, a spokesman for the Jacksonville base.

It flies each Tuesday and Friday from the Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia to the Jacksonville air station and on to Cuba. It then flies again to Virginia with a cease once more at Jacksonville, Dougherty mentioned.

Reporting by Dan Whitcomb, Steve Gorman and Tim Reid in Los Angeles and Tracy Rucinski in Chicago; Writing by Daniel Wallis; enhancing by Diane Craft

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