A Boeing 757-200 cargo plane operated by DHL made a dramatic emergency landing at Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaria international airport, skidded off the runway, and broke in half, losing its tail in the process, according to reports.
DHL, which is a subsidiary of Deutsche Post AG, stated that the crew was undamaged and that one member was being evaluated by a doctor as a precaution.
Imagery obtained by La Nacion, a Costa Rican newspaper, showed an orange jet adorned with the DHL emblem being showered with firefighting foam after landing on a grassy field adjacent to a runway. According to the photographs, the tail had come loose and one of the wings had shattered.
According to Luis Miranda Munoz, deputy director of Costa Rica’s civil aviation authority, the aircraft was on its way to Guatemala when it suffered an apparent breakdown in its hydraulic system, causing it to crash. According to him, the pilot was forced to request an emergency landing shortly after takeoff because of the problem.
A representative for Boeing Co said the company would defer any questions to the appropriate authorities. DHL and airport authorities said they were collaborating to relocate the aircraft, however they stressed that it was not interfering with normal operations.
In a statement, DHL said that its incident response team had been activated and that an investigation would be carried out with the appropriate authorities to ascertain what had transpired.
The airport, located on the outskirts of the capital San Jose, reopened at 3.30 p.m. local time, nearly five hours after the incident and many hours sooner than scheduled, according to the airport’s operator, Aeris.
According to Aeris, the shutdown had an impact on about 8,500 passengers and 57 commercial and cargo flights.
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