US: Plane fire at Chicago airport injures at least 20
Seven passengers and one flight attendant suffered minor injuries and were taken to a hospital, the airline said. (Representative image) Photograph: (Getty)
An American airline flight with 161 passengers and nine crew members caught fire while taking off from Chicago's O'Hare airport, injuring over 20, news agency AFP reported today.
"We transported about 20 patients with minor injuries to several hospitals," Juan Hernandez of the Chicago Fire Department told a news conference, describing the injuries as bruises and ankle injuries.
"We are taking care of our customers and crew and are re-accommodating our passengers on another flight to Miami this evening," American Airlines said.
Boeing 767 bound for Miami suffered a tire blowout, the Federal Aviation Administration said.
Spokesman Tony Molinaro told AFP that that information was preliminary and based on initial reports from the plane's pilots.
However, multiple accounts continued to pour in for apparent cause of the fire.
American Airlines said an "engine-related issue caused the fire". Chicago Fire Department's airport operations official Timothy Sampey said the fire was in one of the plane's engines.
Videos and photographs taken by bystanders showed passengers using the emergency slide and running away from billowing smoke and flames.
Services were not interrupted at O'Hare, but FAA, which is investigating the incident, said that delays were expected.
(WION with inputs from AFP)