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Mon, Oct 29, 2007

Philippine Airline Airbus Overshoots Runway At Bancasi Airport

Jet Ends Up In Banana And Coconut Grove

A Philippine Airlines jet overshot the runway and careened into a coconut grove while landing early Friday, injuring 34 passengers and crew members, officials said.

The Airbus A320, flying from Manila to Butuan city, sustained extensive damage and came to a halt in a grove of trees at the Bancasi Airport at 0645 Friday, airline spokesman Rolando Estabillo told the Associated Press. The plane had 148 passengers and crew onboard.

Nineteen people suffered minor injuries, said police Superintendent Elmer Doyo. The pilot and co-pilot suffered neck and nose injuries, and a total of 34 people were taken to a hospital, Estabillo said.

"Some have only anxiety reaction and had themselves checked," Doyo said, adding that other injuries included scrapes and bruises.

Estabillo said the airport in Butuan, about 490 miles southeast of Manila, was closed until Saturday while the plane and the runway were being inspected. Butuan airport manager Emmanuel Costelo said the plane's two engines were damaged.

The weather was good and there was nothing unusual. We're looking into the pilot error Emmanuel Costelo, airport manager, said it was most likely that the pilot erred during landing and missed the runway angle," according to the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Costelo said he received accounts from eyewitness about the plane landing on the wrong "touch-down zone."

FMI: www.philippineairlines.com/

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