3 Hospitalized After Plane Catches Fire Landing at Miami International Airport

There were 140 people on board, and three were hospitalized for minor injuries, officials said

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A plane carrying 140 people caught fire after landing at Miami International Airport Tuesday, leaving three people hospitalized with minor injuries.

Red Air Flight 203 from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, had landed around 5:30 p.m. when the landing gear in the nose of the plane collapsed, Miami International Airport officials said.

Footage showed the plane skidding down the runway on its belly before catching fire, sending large plumes of black smoke into the air

The MD-82 jetliner was carrying 130 passengers and 10 crew members, Red Air said in a statement. Airport officials had earlier said 126 people were onboard.

Three people were taken to the hospital for minor injuries and later released, officials said.

Passengers on a Red Air flight described fear and many emotions when the plane caught on fire at Miami International Airport. NBC 6's Ryan Nelson reports

Miami-Dade Fire Rescue officials said when crews arrived they found one of the plane's wings on fire.

Firefighters were able to quickly get the fire under control and searched the plane to make sure no one was left onboard.

Crews also worked to contain fuel that was spilling from the plane, officials said.

Footage from the scene showed the plane on its belly being doused with foam by firetrucks. Photos and videos posted on social media showed passengers nearby walking on the runway.

The airport was experiencing some flight delays Tuesday evening, airport officials said in a tweet, adding passengers were instructed to check with airlines for details. The tweet added that the collapse of the front landing gear in the nose of the aircraft appeared to be the cause of the fire.

One person who was onboard shared video from inside the plane as passengers exited and slid down an evacuation slide.

"When I saw the fire, when I jumped out of the airplane, I saw a lot of smoke, it was dark actually, then it was like a burnt smell," passenger Paolo Delgado said.

Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava happened to be landing at the airport on a different flight from Philadelphia around the same time as the crash.

"The plane landed, apparently a tire burst and then it went back up and came back down and the landing was so hard that the entire landing apparatus was destroyed and the belly of the plane is on the ground," Levine Cava told reporters. "Immediately when I deplaned I went to see for myself and of course what happened here is a miracle."

Passengers were bussed from the plane to the terminal, where they were reunited with family members and described the moments the plane crashed.

"I thought I was going to die actually, I had an old man next to me and I was like hugging him," passenger Paola Garcia said. "Horrible. It was horrible.” 

Federal Aviation Administration officials said they're investigating the crash.

The National Transportation Safety Board said that a team would arrive at the airport by Wednesday to investigate the crash and fire.

Viewer video shows a Red Air airplane on fire at Miami International Airport on Tuesday, June 21, 2022.
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