Recovery personnel are shown on Sunday around wreckage from a Pakistan International Airlines A-320 that crashed into a neighborhood of Karachi on Friday, killing 97 of the 99 people aboard. No one on the ground was killed. (Asif Hassan/AFP via Getty Images)

Doomed Pakistani A-320 May have Damaged Its Engines Trying to Land

Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has reportedly said that the engines of an Airbus A-320 that crashed on Friday in Karachi may have scraped the runway during an unsuccessful landing attempt, damaging them and perhaps other parts of the aircraft. Ninety-seven of the 99 people aboard the Pakistan International Airlines flight from Lahore were killed during what is known in aviation parlance as a “go around” for an additional landing attempt, and after the pilots reportedly indicated to air traffic controllers that they were having engine and landing gear problems. According to New Delhi-based NDTV, a preliminary report by the CAA said that after the attempted landing, the pilot of the doomed airliner “was directed by the air traffic controller to take the aircraft to 3,000 feet, but he managed [to reach] only 1,800. When the cockpit was reminded to go for the 3,000-feet level, the first officer said ‘We are trying.’” This response may have indicated engine problems. NDTV also said that prior to the initial landing attempt, a controller warned the pilot twice that he was at too high an approach altitude, in both cases the pilot radioing back that he was aware and satisfied with the situation.

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