US passenger jet catches fire during takeoff at Chicago airport

American Airlines Flight 383, a Boeing 767, was bound for Miami with 161 passengers and a crew of nine on board.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

The cause of the incident was not immediately clear but the airline said the plane aborted takeoff due to an "engine-related issue."

Updated Oct 29, 2016

An American Airlines passenger plane caught fire moments before a takeoff at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago on Friday, authorities said.

Flight 383, a Boeing 767 bound for Miami with 161 passengers and a crew of nine on board, aborted takeoff after a blaze broke out, leading the crew to evacuate the passengers through emergency chutes.

The cause of the incident was not immediately clear but the airline said the plane aborted takeoff due to an "engine-related issue."

"We transported about 20 patients with minor injuries to several hospitals," Juan Hernandez of the Chicago Fire Department told a news conference.

He said the injuries were mainly bruises and ankle injuries incurred as passengers exited through the emergency slides.

The Chicago Department of Aviation also confirmed in a statement that the city fire department responded to an aircraft fire involving American Airlines Flight 383 and that the passengers were off the plane.

It said no crash was involved.

The incident forced the closure of at least three of the airport's eight runways, the city Aviation Department said.

A video clip posted on social media showed passengers shouting at each other to hurry as they move down the aisle to the emergency exit slide.

Emergency crews surrounded the jet, which appeared to be intact on the runway, though its right side and right wing were charred. 

The FAA said it was investigating the incident and the National Transportation Safety Board had been notified. 

Source: 
TRTWorld and agencies