Slipping on snow: Japan Airlines Boeing 787 skids off runway

Over 200 passengers onboard Japan Airlines (JAL) Boeing 787 had a scary experience, as the aircraft skidded off an icy runway at Tokyo Narita International Airport (NRT).

The plane, registered JA870J, was carrying out flight JL740 from Delhi International Airport (DEL) to Tokyo-Narita. Upon landing, its left main gear slipped on a patch of ice present on the runway, leading to the plane skidding into the soft ground, according to the Narita airport office of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, quoted by Japanese news agency Kyodo News. The wheels of the left gear were buried in the mud, making the plane immovable.

The 201 passengers and crew members were able to leave the aircraft unharmed. According to Japanese media footage, the aircraft was not severely damaged during the incident.

The captain declared on NHK public television, “It seems that the surface was frozen, I slipped and applied a brake, but I could not prevent it.”

The incident caused the closure of one of Narita’s two runways for an hour, Narito airport spokesman Kazuhiko Morio said. It was then closed again to move the plane from the runway into a safe zone.

The incident took place on February 1, 2019. That day, the airport was affected by only a light snowfall. Due to the incident, the airport had to temporary shutdown of one of its two runways, resulting in traffic disruptions. Traffic was disrupted for about an hour.

Light snowfall in the Kanto region, eastern Japan, had been announced by the National Meteorological Agency, particularly around Narita

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Clement Charpentreau
Editor-in-chief[br][br] Clement joined the AeroTime editorial team in 2018 after honing his journalism skills in newsrooms across France. Clement has a particular interest in the role of the aviation industry in international relations. He reports mainly on developments in defense and security technology, and aviation safety. Clement is based in Vilnius, Lithuania.
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