Air India flight hits airport wall before take-off

Indian flight hits airport wall takes off returns to find HUGE hole in its hull

According to a statement made by Air India Express, "after flight IX 611 from Trichy to Dubai had taken off from Trichy at about 1.30am today, it was reported by local Airport officials at Trichy, that they have observed that [the] aircraft might have come in contact with the airport perimeter wall".

Tamil Nadu Tourism Minister Vellamandi N Natrajan, who assessed the spot, said, "The flight which was to go to Dubai during take-off had its take-off wheel hitting on the compound wall and the air traffic level".

"All passengers landed safely at Mumbai airport and another aircraft from Mumbai to Dubai was arranged", the airline said.

Air India Express thereby issued a statement saying that an internal inquiry has been set up, the pilot and co-pilot have been de-rostered until the investigation is complete. "The pilot in command reported that the aircraft systems were operating normally", it said. However, airline officials said they do not have much information on which part of the aircraft had hit the antenna on ground or the damage to the aircraft.

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"The flight diverted to Mumbai and landed safely around 5.35 am in Mumbai, and taxied on its own power to the parking stand", it said. The pilot in command D Ganesh Babu has a flying experience of 3.600 hours on the B 737 aircraft, including 500 hours as a commander. The aircraft, with 136 passengers and crew on board, was damaged on its belly.

"It was made a decision to divert the aircraft to Mumbai as a precautionary measure".

Air India has taken the pilot and co-pilot off duties pending an investigation and the Directorate-General of Civil Aviation has been informed of the incident, the airline tweeted.

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