A hard landing in Sacramento on Thursday left 15 people with minor injuries. The tires of a JetBlue airbus a-320 airplane caught on fire during the landing after a flight from Long Beach, causing passengers to disembark using emergency slides.
Passengers reported feeling a hard thud when the plane touched down around 12:50p.m., but that no one thought much about it until the crew began directing everyone to exit via the inflatable slides. Only when they reached the ground did they see the burning tires.
The 87 passengers were taken to the terminal on airport buses said airport spokeswoman Gina Swankie. Another airline spokeswoman Sharon Jones said that the plane appeared to experience trouble with its brakes, and four tires blew out during the landing.
The nature of the injuries sustained weren’t immediately available but 5 people were taken to a hospital including one elderly woman complaining of neck pain. One passenger reported that most of the injuries were abrasions, bruises and sprained ankles caused by using the slides. Due to the nature of the emergency there wasn’t really time for the flight attendants to give anyone directions and the slides are a very rapid descent to the ground. Several people were able to go down the slide then walk over to the Sacramento Fire Department triage area for evaluation.
The incident caused a back up in AirBlue flights and left the disabled plane sitting on the runway for several hours. Some passengers waiting at the terminal to leave Sacramento were able to rebook their flights out of Oakland, just a short drive away rather than wait indefinitely. At least a dozen passengers lingered in the terminal to await their luggage and belongings. JetBlue paid for airport food for all who were there.
No other airlines out of Sacramento experienced any delays due to this incident according to the Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor. The incident is being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board.