Friday, March 23, 2007

Ariana Afghan A300 skids off runway at Istanbul

Ariana A300An Airbus A300B4 aircraft operated by Afghanistan's national flag carrier Ariana Afghan Airlines skidded off a runway at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport earlier today, according to a brief  article published in the International Herald Tribune. The aircraft had just arrived on a scheduled flight from Kabul when it apparently overran the runway after landing at Istanbul in light rain conditions.

The article says that all passengers and crew were evacuated from the aircraft using slides. No injuries have been reported.

Another report about the accident on the in Turkey says that the runway was temporarily closed after the accident, but that there were "only minor disruptions to other arrivals and departures." identifies the accident aircraft as Ariana Flight FG719 from Kabul to Istanbul, via Ankara. That article includes two photos of the aircraft with its right wing resting on the grass. notes that "European Union air transport regulators have included Ariana on the ‘blacklist’ banning the carrier from operating to EU member states."

As a side note, the IHT article mentioned that there were 50 people aboard the aircraft, including 20 crew members. That's an unusually large crew complement for an A300 with so few passengers, don't you think? That number may turn out to be incorrect -- or perhaps some of those crew were deadheading.

[Photo Source]

Update: Less than an hour after the above post was published, a reader contacted me with a link to some more photos of this accident. Check out this post on, a Turkish website. I can't read Turkish, so I don't know what it says, but the photos quite clearly show the aircraft at rest on its starboard wing and engine. Someone please do correct me if I am wrong, but it looks like the right main gear may be collapsed -- and the nose gear is suspended well above the ground!

P.S. to the reader who sent me the link to the photos: Yes, it is definitely okay to post something like that in the comments.