Boeing 737 Skidded At "Tabletop Airport" In Kerala, Says Union Minister

Kerala plane crash: Kozhikode airport is a "tabletop" airport, junior External Affairs Minister V Muraleedharan tweeted

Air India plane crash: Kozhikode airport is a "tabletop" airport, V Muraleedharan tweeted

New Delhi:

An Air India Express plane that skidded on the runway in Kerala's Kozhikode this evening was a Boeing 737 NG or Next Generation, which was succeeded by the now grounded 737 MAX. The Air India Express flight IX 1344 came from Dubai with 190 people on board, including four cabin crew and two pilots. Seventeen people including both the pilots died in the crash.

Kozhikode airport is a "tabletop" airport, junior External Affairs Minister V Muraleedharan tweeted. A tabletop runway is a runway on the top of a plateau or hill with one or both ends adjacent to a steep elevation, which drops into a gorge. Such an airport presents a challenging condition for landing.

Early visuals show the Boeing 737 NG broken in two pieces with debris strewn all over.

In late July, the US regulator Federal Aviation Administration issued an emergency airworthiness directive for 2,000 US-registered Boeing 737 NG and Classic aircraft that have been in storage, warning they could have corrosion that could lead to a dual-engine failure. The directive covers planes not operated for seven or more consecutive days.

In October last year, Boeing faced announced that up to 50 of its 737 NG aircraft - a predecessor to the 737 MAX - have been grounded after several operators discovered cracks on the aircraft.