Nose Gear Collapses When US Airways Plane Aborts Takeoff At Philadelphia

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Passengers mill around and take pictures after being evacuated safely from US Airways Flight 1702. COURTESY OF WILL JAGER

CBS News – A US Airways plane blew a tire as it was taking off from Philadelphia International Airport on Thursday evening and the nose gear collapsed as the plane made an emergency landing, the airline said.

The 149 passengers and five crew members aboard Flight 1702 were evacuated via emergency chutes, an airline spokeswoman and the Federal Aviation Administration said.

Two minor injuries were reported but no one was seriously hurt, CBS Philadelphia reported.
The Airbus A320 was taking off from Philadelphia en route to Fort Lauderdale. The plane had just gotten airport when the incident occurred at 6:25 p.m. and the pilot decided to land, the airline spokeswoman said.

“The plane went up, came back down a little bit the first time, then didn’t think much of it. Went up the second time, and then kind of felt loose and went straight back into the ground. Kind of sheer terror in everyone’s eyes,” passenger Will Jager told CBS Philadelphia.

“Quite a bit of panic. Soon after we landed, smoke was coming out of the engine. The pilot ordered everyone to evacuate, then everyone got up, you know, ‘Let me off the plane, let me off the plane first.’ But it was fairly orderly,” Jager said.

Some passengers used their cellphones to take photos and video of the incident the moment they got off the plane.

The airport was closed immediately following the incident but three of the four runways were later reopened. Only the runway where the incident occurred remained closed.
The FAA said it was investigating.

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