Sudan Airways plane crash lands after wheels jam
A Sudan Airways plane carrying 45 passengers was forced to crash land at Khartoum airport on Sunday after its wheels jammed, a civil aviation spokesman said, without causing deaths or serious injury.
The Fokker 50 aircraft left the Sudanese capital bound for the southern town of Malakal but the young pilot was unable to deploy the wheels on arrival and returned directly to Khartoum, Abdelhafez Abdelrahim told AFP.
Aviation authorities instructed the pilot to fly around the city for more than an hour, to burn up two tons of fuel still in the aircraft before the descent, and covered the runway with chemicals to facilitate the landing.
The Sudan Airways general manager blamed US sanctions for the technical problems that caused the near-fatal accident.
“American sanctions impact on the whole aviation industry in Sudan, because we face many difficulties in getting spare parts,” Al-Obeid Mohammed told reporters.
It was the latest in a series of air crashes and accidents in Sudan, whose national carrier is on a list of airlines banned from the EU because they do not meet European safety standards.
At least 30 people burned to death when a Sudan Airways Airbus A310, carrying more than 200 people, burst into flames on landing in Khartoum in 2008.