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Miami - Two Passengers Still In Hospital In Florida As Plane Fire Investigated

Published on: October 30, 2015 04:30 PM
By: Reuters 
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An unidentified passenger from the Dynamic International Airways Boeing 767 airplane that caught fire while taxiing for takeoff, is carried on a stretcher at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, 29 October 2015. The left engine of the Caracas, Venezuela bound jet was reported to have caught fire. At least seven people were injured during the evacuation of the 115 passengers and crew.  EPA/CRISTOBAL HERRERAAn unidentified passenger from the Dynamic International Airways Boeing 767 airplane that caught fire while taxiing for takeoff, is carried on a stretcher at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, 29 October 2015. The left engine of the Caracas, Venezuela bound jet was reported to have caught fire. At least seven people were injured during the evacuation of the 115 passengers and crew.  EPA/CRISTOBAL HERRERA

Miami - Two adult passengers remained hospitalized as National Transportation Safety Board investigators began examining the engine on a Venezuela-bound 767 airplane that burst into flames before takeoff on Thursday at a South Florida airport, officials said.

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Twenty-one people were taken to Broward Health Medical Center for evaluation, one in serious condition, as 101 passengers and crew evacuated the Dynamic International Airways’ Boeing 767-200ER using inflatable emergency slides, hospital spokeswoman Amy Erez said on Friday.

Nineteen people were treated and released, she said, and both of the patients admitted were in stable condition as of Friday.

Most of the injuries were bumps and bruises, according to Broward County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Michael Jachles.

Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport officials on Friday said the fire was knocked out within four minutes before it could reach the cabin. “Operations-wise and safety-wise, it couldn’t have worked any better,” Kent George, the airport’s director of aviation, told reporters.

Between 45 and 50 gallons of fuel leaked onto the taxiway, he said, requiring repairs to the tarmac. Neither of the airport’s two runways was damaged.

Television images on Thursday showed the plane surrounded by white foam and firefighters’ trucks as thick black smoke engulfed the left wing engine.

The 29-year-old aircraft was leaking fuel before departure, the Federal Aviation Administration said, and an alert pilot on a jet taxiing behind it warned the crew about the leak.

The airport reopened about three hours after the incident, and both its runways were operating on Friday, officials said.

Greensboro, North Carolina-based Dynamic said it had operated wide-body aircraft since 2009 and issued an apology to its passengers.

Operations Director Don Dodson said in a statement that the company was cooperating with authorities and would not speculate on the cause of the accident.

The carrier flies from Fort Lauderdale and New York’s JFK airport to Caracas and Maracaibo in Venezuela, as well as to Georgetown in neighboring Guyana, according to its website.

Dynamic’s 767-200ER was built in 1986, and only seven such planes of that age or older remain in service out of 65 built, according to aircraft appraisal firm Collateral Verifications.



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