Five people on board a Coast Guard aircraft died after a runway collision with a Japan Airlines plane at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport, the country’s transport minister said.
“Regarding the coast guard plane, we have been informed that the captain escaped and five people were confirmed dead,” Tetsuo Saito said as per news agency AFP.
Meanwhile, all 379 passengers and crew of a Japan Airlines plane escaped the fire that erupted after it collided with the Coast Guard aircraft.
Public broadcaster NHK showed the aircraft erupt in flames while rescue crews attempted to control the blaze.
Japanese prime minister Fumio Kishida instructed relevant agencies to coordinate to assess the damage swiftly, according to his office.
What Japan Coast Guard said on the collision?
The Japan Coast Guard said it was investigating the possibility that one of its aircraft collided with the passenger jet.
Five out of the six crew of the coast guard aircraft who were unaccounted for following the crash were later found, news agency Reuters reported quoting NHK.
The pilot was evacuated, it added.
Haneda has closed all runways following the incident, a spokesperson for the airport said as per news agency Reuters.
What we know so far on the plane that caught fire
The plane- an Airbus A-350 JAL flight 516 which flew out of Shin Chitose airport- burst into flames on the runway of Tokyo’s Haneda airport.
It is reported to be hit by another aircraft after landing- possibly a Japan Coast Guard plane.
NHK footage showed large eruptions of fire and smoke from the side of the Japan Airlines plane as it taxied on a runway.
The plane was then entirely engulfed in fire.
Were the passengers evacuated?
All the 367 passengers plus eight toddlers and 12 crew on board the plane were safely evacuated, an airline spokesperson said as per Bloomberg.