The pilots of a Red Air jet felt increasing vibrations down the plane’s left side before its left landing gear collapsed last month, causing it to veer off a runway at Miami International Airport, the National Transportation Safety Board said Wednesday.
NTSB investigators interviewed the plane’s pilot and first officer, who said the landing initially was smooth, with the right landing gear first touching down on the runway. But the left landing gear collapsed after settling onto the runway, swinging the McDonnell Douglas MD-82 jet to the left and off the runway.
The plane, built in 1990, crashed into a steel and concrete equipment shelter, breaching its fuel tanks, according to the NTSB report. The rest of the landing gear collapsed, and one of the plane’s wings caught fire, investigators said.
The 10 crew members and 130 passengers evacuated the plane. Four passengers suffered minor injuries. Videos from the crash showed people screaming as they ran from the fire.
An image from an NTSB drone shows the stricken jet two days later, a wing partially collapsed and a trail of debris from the equipment shelter behind it. Tire marks are visible on the runway.
Red Air is based in the Dominican Republic. The plane was flying from Santo Domingo, the nation’s capital.
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