There were 10 infants on board the Air India Express flight that skidded off the Karipur runway while landing on Friday evening, Air India said in its first statement on the accident at Kozhikode international airport.
"There are 174 passengers, 10 Infants , 2 Pilots and 5 cabin Crew on board the aircraft," the airline said reports Hindustan Times
The Air India Express flight from Dubai to Calicut was attempting to land at Karipur's table top runway in heavy rain when the accident took place. The 737 Boeing plane continued running to the end of the runway and fell down in the valley. It broke into two pieces, aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation said in a statement.
Malayalam-language news outlet Manorma news said the plane fell 35 feet into the valley before breaking into two pieces reports Hindustan Times
There are reports of two deaths including the pilot. The casualties would have been higher if the plane had caught fire. "Luckily this didn't happen," an official said.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah has ordered teams of the National Disaster Response Force to rush to the accident site to assist with the rescue operations. "Distressed to learn about the tragic accident of Air India Express aircraft in Kozhikode, Kerala," Shah, who is down with coronavirus and is recuperating at a Gurugram hospital near Delhi, tweeted.