Passengers evacuated after engine bursts into flames on Air India jet

The flight bound for Kochi in southern India had 141 passengers on board. PHOTO: REUTERS

MUSCAT - More than a hundred passengers were evacuated from a Boeing Co 737-800 operated by Air India Express Ltd after one of its engines caught fire while the aircraft was taxiing to take off from Muscat, the capital of Oman, on Wednesday.

Everyone got off the plane safely and the jet was left parked on the airport runway, according to Mr Arun Kumar, head of India's Directorate General of Civil Aviation. The DGCA is investigating the matter, Mr Kumar said in a text message.

The flight bound for Kochi in southern India had 141 passengers on board, and was preparing to depart Muscat at 11,20am local time, Air India Express said in a statement.

Crew from another aircraft reported observing fumes from one of the engines, the airline said, adding there was no indication of fire warning in the cockpit.

The crew stopped on the taxiway, activated onboard engine fire extinguishers and evacuated passengers, Air India Express said.

Some passengers suffered minor bruises, but no major injuries were reported.

India's aviation regulator started inspecting all of the country's airlines in July following a series of non-fatal incidents, including engine issues, cracked windshields and cabin-pressure loss. BLOOMBERG

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