A Boeing 737 plane which was landing at a naval airport, skidded off the runway and fell into the St Johns river in Florida.
However it was gathered that the 143 passengers and crew survived the incident and accounted for. The military-chartered Miami Air International plane was trying to land in a thunderstorm at the naval air station in Jacksonville en route from Guantanamo Bay in Cuba at around 9.40pm local time when it skidded off the runway into the St Johns river, a statement from the navy airport said.
Twenty-one adults were transported to local hospitals for minor injuries but were in good condition. The mayor of Jacksonville said on Twitter that everyone on board the flight was “alive and accounted for”, but that crews were working to control jet fuel on the water after the plane fell into the river.
“The plane was not submerged. Every person is alive and accounted for,” the Jacksonville sheriff’s office said on Twitter. A passenger on board the plane, lawyer Cheryl Bormann, told CNN in an interview that the flight, which had been four hours late in departing, made a “really hard landing” in Jacksonville amid thunder and lightning.
“We came down, the plane literally hit the ground and bounced, it was clear the pilot did not have total control of the plane, it bounced again,” she said, adding that the experience was “terrifying”.