Key Points:

  • A Japan Airlines Airbus A350 carrying 379 passengers and crew caught fire on the runway at Tokyo's Haneda Airport after colliding with a Japan Coast Guard aircraft.

  • No injuries were reported among the JAL passengers and crew, who were successfully evacuated.

  • Five of the six crew members aboard the coast guard plane are currently unaccounted for.

Tragic Collision Casts Shadow over Haneda Airport as JAL Plane Bursts into Flames

A harrowing scene unfolded at Tokyo's Haneda Airport on Tuesday night as a Japan Airlines (JAL) aircraft carrying 379 passengers and crew erupted in flames on the runway following a collision with a Japan Coast Guard plane. This incident, witnessed live on national broadcaster NHK, has shaken the aviation community and raised concerns about safety protocols at the busy airport.

The JAL flight, identified as Flight 516 and originating from Shin-Chitose Airport in Hokkaido, landed at Haneda at approximately 5:47 p.m. According to a JAL spokesperson, the Airbus A350 aircraft caught fire shortly after landing, with its left wing apparently colliding with the coast guard plane. Dramatic footage broadcasted by Nippon TV showed the plane engulfed in flames, sending plumes of smoke billowing into the night sky.

Thankfully, all passengers and crew aboard the JAL aircraft were successfully evacuated, and miraculously, no injuries were reported. The fate of the six crew members on the coast guard plane, however, remains uncertain. Five of them are currently unaccounted for, highlighting the gravity of the collision and the ongoing rescue efforts.

The cause of the collision is still under investigation, and aviation authorities have launched a thorough probe to determine the factors that led to this tragic incident. The impact on flight operations at Haneda Airport is being assessed, and disruptions are expected as the runway remains closed for investigation and emergency response.

This midafternoon disaster at Haneda, one of the world's busiest airports, has sent shockwaves through the aviation industry and the Japanese public. While the prompt evacuation of the JAL passengers and crew is a cause for relief, the missing coast guard personnel and the unanswered questions surrounding the cause of the collision cast a shadow over this event. As investigations continue, the focus remains on ensuring the safety of all passengers and crew members at Haneda and across Japan's air travel network.