September 09, 2013
Thai Airways is blaming landing gear failure for a Sept. 8 accident in which an Airbus A330-300 skidded off the runway on landing.
Thirteen of the aircraft’s 288 passengers suffered minor injuries during the emergency night evacuation at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport after a flight from Guangzhou, China, says Thai Airways President Sorajak Kasemsuvan. There was also a cabin crew of 14 aboard.
“After touchdown at Suvarnabhumi airport, the landing gear malfunctioned and caused the aircraft to skid off the runway,” Kasemsuvan says in a statement. “Sparks were noticed from the vicinity of the right landing gear near the engine. ... The captain took control of the aircraft until it came to a complete stop and passengers were evacuated from the aircraft emergency exits.”
The airline adds that emergency procedures were strictly followed.
Media photographs of the aircraft show its nose on the ground, suggesting that whatever was wrong with the right main landing gear, the nose gear collapsed during the incident. The main gear also appears to have at least partly collapsed. The aircraft came to a rest nose down but with its engine nacelles touching the ground.
Kasemsuvan does not mention use of escape slides, but photos show they were deployed.
Thai painted over its logos and titles on the aircraft after the accident.