MIAMI – A constitution aircraft carrying 143 individuals and touring from Cuba to north Florida ended up in a river on the finish of a runway Friday night time, although no important accidents or deaths had been reported, officers stated.
A Boeing 737 arriving at Naval Air Station Jacksonville from Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, with 136 passengers and 7 aircrew slid off the runway into the St. Johns River, a NAS Jacksonville information launch stated.
The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Workplace posted on Twitter marine unit responded to help. The aircraft was in shallow water and never submerged. Everybody on the aircraft was alive and accounted for, the company posted, with 21 adults transported to native hospitals in good situation.
A photograph posted by deputies exhibits a Miami Air Worldwide emblem on the aircraft. The corporate did not instantly reply to messages from The Related Press.
Capt. Michael Connor, the commanding officer of NAS Jacksonville, stated throughout a information convention that passengers had been a mixture of civilian and navy personnel. Some had been staying within the space, whereas others had been set to fly on to different components of the nation.
Whereas the crash definitely wasn’t ideally suited, Connor acknowledged that it may have been a lot worse.
“I believe it’s a miracle,” Connor stated. “We may very well be speaking a few completely different story this night.”
It wasn’t identified how lengthy it will take to take away the aircraft from the river, however Connor stated the touchdown gear seemed to be resting on the river mattress, making it unlikely for the plane to drift away. He stated crews started working to include any jet gas leaks virtually instantly after securing the passengers’ security.
Liz Torres instructed the Florida Occasions-Union that she heard what seemed like a gunshot Friday night time from her residence in Orange Park, about 5 miles (eight kilometers) south of NAS Jacksonville. She then drove right down to a Goal parking zone the place police and firefighters had been staging to search out out extra.
“I’ve by no means seen something like this,” she stated.
The Jacksonville Fireplace and Rescue Division posted on Twitter that roughly 90 personnel responded to the scene, including that the division’s particular operations crew had educated with marine models for the same incident earlier Friday.
Navy safety and emergency response personnel had been on the scene and monitoring the scenario, the Navy launch stated. Relations who had been anticipating the arrival of passengers had been instructed to face by.
Officers didn’t instantly say what induced the aircraft to go away the runway. Boeing stated in a tweet Friday night time that it was investigating: “We’re conscious of an incident in Jacksonville, Fla., and are gathering data.”
The Federal Aviation Administration was referring media inquiries to NAS Jacksonville.
Connor stated Nationwide Transportation Security Board investigators had been already on their manner.