Durango, Mexico: An Aeromexico plane (flight number 2431 ) has crashed in the northern Mexican state of Durango with 101 people on board, injuring at least 80 people. Durango is more than 550 miles northwest of Mexico City.
The airline said flight AM2431 was an Embraer 190 with a capacity for 100 passengers and was bound for Mexico City when it crashed. The Embraer 190 aircraft is often used for regional commercial flights around the world including U.S. carriers like American Airlines and JetBlue.
A spokesman for the civil defence office of Durango state said 80 people were injured in the accident, while the governor of the state said there were no deaths.
The head of Mexico’s Transport Department said “the plane fell upon takeoff.” Gerardo Ruiz Eparza said there were 97 passengers and four crew members aboard the plane.
Aeromexico Flight 2431 went down not long after departing from the General Guadalupe Victoria International Airport in Mexico’s northwest state of Durango, according to Durango State Gov. José Rosas Aispuro Torres.
“It is confirmed that there were no deaths following the accident of flight Aeromexico 2431,” Aispuro Torres wrote on Twitter. “At this moment on behalf of the cabinet, led by Coordinator Rosario Castro, to attend to the injured and cooperate with airport authorities with what has occurred.” The Embraer 190 aircraft was lifting off when it tried to abort the takeoff due to bad weather but it was too late, Aispuro Torres told reporters on Tuesday. The passenger jet went down after the runway ended, he said.
The governor added that a gust of wind hit the plane shortly after takeoff, causing it to lose speed and hit the ground with its left wing. The jet skidded into a field horizontally, which allowed for the escape slides to be activated, freeing the passengers and crew before they caught on fire, the governor said.
TV images showed the tail of a plane bearing an Aeromexico logo emerging from scrubland and a column of smoke rising into the sky.
A reporter for network Milenio said some passengers had survived and walked to a highway to seek help.
Shortly after taking off, the plane made an emergency landing about six miles (10km) from the airport, Alejandro Cardoza, a spokesman for the state’s civil protection agency, said on local television.
The civil defence office of Durango state said the accident occurred in a field near the airport for the state capital, also named Durango.
The airport has been closed.
The Aircraft was an Embraer E190 aircraft, which is a short range airliner with 11 Business Class seats and 88 Economy Class Seats. The Embraer E190 has an impeccable safety record — this aircraft involved in AM2431 crash was 10 years old. Aeromexico operates the jet on regional routes under its Aeromexico Connect brand.
Aeromexico are the flag carrier airline of Mexico, a very safe airline — and have not had an incident with a fatality in over 30 years.
Embraer, the plane’s manufacturer, said in a statement that technicians were sent to the crash site and that it was “aware of the accident. The Company stands ready to support the investigating authorities.”