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11 Injured As Boeing Plane Skids Off Runway In Senegal

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A Boeing 737/300-passenger aircraft operating under Air Senegal, chartered by the privately-owned Transair, veered off the runway during an early morning takeoff in Senegal, injuring 11 people and leading to the temporary closure of the international airport near Dakar.

Naija News reports that the incident occurred around 1 am (0100 GMT) Thursday, disrupting operations for nearly 12 hours.

The aircraft, destined for Bamako, Mali, was carrying 78 passengers when it failed to successfully take off at Blaise Diagne International Airport, located 50 kilometres from Dakar.

According to airport management group LAS, which includes Turkish firms Limak and Summa and the publicly owned airport operator AIBD, four of the injured passengers sustained serious injuries, while six others required medical check-ups within the airport facilities.

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In response to the accident, the airport’s emergency plan was promptly activated, facilitating the evacuation and immediate care of passengers.

“All the airport emergency services have been mobilized for the evacuation of passengers and their care, as per the plan,” stated a representative from LAS.

The aircraft was subsequently immobilized away from the runway, and images circulating online showed significant damage to the left engine and wing, which was covered in firefighting foam.

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The airport confirmed that operations resumed normally shortly after midday.

The LAS group announced, “We inform you that Blaise Diagne International Airport has reopened. Airport operations have resumed as normal.”

Authorities have initiated an investigation to ascertain the precise cause of the incident.

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Aviation specialists, along with airline representatives, are currently examining the airline log data and interviewing crew members to determine why the aircraft departed from the runway.

This incident adds to a challenging period for Air Senegal, which has faced ongoing criticism over delays affecting both domestic and international flights.

The airline commenced operations in May 2018 following the collapse of Senegal Airlines in 2016 and aims to transform Dakar into a regional air hub, leveraging the newly inaugurated airport facilities.

Established in 2010 and based at Blaise Diagne International Airport, Transair serves several destinations across West Africa and transports approximately 90,000 passengers annually.

This event follows closely on the heels of another incident involving a Boeing aircraft. A FedEx Boeing 767 cargo plane landed at Istanbul airport without its front landing gear, as reported by the US Federal Aviation Administration, although no injuries occurred in that instance.