A Mombasa bound plane operated by Silverstone Air has skidded off the runway at Wilson Airport in the capital Nairobi.Witnesses say the craft lost its way during take-off to Mombasa on Friday morning.
“This is a suspected engine failure. The plane has two engines which failed at 9am,” a pilot told the Star on Friday. Kenya Red Cross also reported that the the 5Y-IZO aircraft “developed some technical hitch while taking off”.
A passenger who had boarded the plane told the Nation that they were yet to hit the skies when the pilot realized “some issues”, without giving details.
The plane which skid off is a Fokker 50 of registration number 5Y IZO with a serial number of 20244. It was manufactured in 1992 by Fokker aviation of Netherlands.
There were no immediate reports on casualties but most of the passengers suffered trauma after literally brushing with death.
Emergency rescue teams at the airport evacuated the plane, with the pilot and some passengers being rushed to various hospitals for medical check-up.
Firefighters, who arrived on the scene in good time, sprayed thick foam on the plane as they battled to prevent flames.
In a brief statement posted on Twitter, Silverstone Air confirmed the accident, saying the plane was operating on the Wilson-Mombasa- Lamu-Mombasa-Wilson route.
“The passengers and crew have all been safely disembarked and we are currently working with the relevant authorities to assess the situation,” the statement reads in part.