An Emirates plane (EK521) crash landed at the Dubai international airport on Wednesday after it reportedly caught fire mid-air. It was coming from Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala, India. The airline confirmed that the accident took place at 12.45 pm local time, which is 1.45 pm IST.
Emirates can confirm that an incident happened at Dubai International Airport on 3rd August 2016 at about 12.45pm local time.— Emirates airline (@emirates) August 3, 2016
There were 282 passengers and 18 crew on board the Boeing 777, confirmed the airline. All of them have been evacuated safely. There were 226 Indian nationals on board the aircraft. Two dozen others were UK nationals, six each from the USA and Saudi Arabia, five from Turkey, and four from Ireland. Others on board were from Australia, Brazil, Germany, Malaysia, Thailand, Croatia, Egypt, Lebanon, Philippines, South Africa, Switzerland, Tunisia, and Bosnia & Herzegovina.
Early visuals of the aircraft showed smoke billowing out of it.
"We are extending full co-operation to authorities and emergency services managing the situation," said a tweet from the Emirates Airlines' official handle. A four-hour network-wide delay is expected.
In an official statement, the airlines posted helpline numbers for family members of the affected passengers. All of them are toll-free numbers, confirmed the airline.
"The main priority remains with those involved and offering support to concerned family and friends. Dedicated telephone lines are now active for family members:
UAE - 8002111
UK - 00442034508853
US - 0018113502081"
The UAE government announced that all flights departing from the airport have been delayed indefinitely. All arrival flights have been diverted to the Maktoum International Airport or Sharjah International Airport, reported Al Arabiya.
A video of the crash landing shows that the plane exploded after crash landing, reportedly just after all the passengers and crew were safely evacuated.
The fire was extinguished by 3 pm Dubai local time on Wednesday afternoon. According to Flightradar24, the aircraft was delivered in March 2003. The reason for the accident still remains unclear.