SA Airlink skids off PE runway

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An SA Airlink aircraft with 32 passengers left the runway and ran on to the grassy verge at the Port Elizabeth airport yesterday afternoon, Airports Company SA (Acsa) says.

The plane, bound for East London, veered off the runway at 1.30 pm on take-off and ended up 40 metres away from the runway, said Acsa spokesman Collen Naidoo.

No passengers or crew members on board were injured, the South African Press Assoiation reports.

Netcare 911 spokesman Jeff Wicks said all the passengers were safely evacuated by Acsa firefighters and shuttled to the arrivals area.

“Passengers insist that, as the plane rumbled down the runway and gathered speed, they heard a loud noise from the left of the plane and it spun violently and skidded into the grass,” added Wicks.

“Besides being visibly shaken, all passengers and the crew are in good health.”

Acsa said the SA Civil Aviation Authority will investigate the incident.

Passengers have told medics that they heard a loud noise from the left of the plane as it rumbled down the runway and gathered speed.

It then spun violently and skidded onto the grass.



Pic: A SA Airlink turboprop