NEW DELHI: At least 11 people have been confirmed dead and many more feared dead in the ill-fated Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight PK-303 with 98 people on board that crashed near the Jinnah International Airport in Karachi on Friday, according to a British channel quoting the provincial health minister. According to media reports, one passenger survived the crash.
Flight PK-8303 from Lahore was about to land in Karachi when it crashed at the Jinnah Garden area near Model Colony in Malir, just a minute before its landing. The PIA Airbus A320 had 98 people on board including 91 passengers and seven flight crew.
The plane had lost contact with air traffic control just after 14:30 local time (09:30 GMT), an airline spokesman said, the channel reported.
Thick black smokes billowed from the scene and debris lay scattered in streets as ambulances rushed through chaotic crowds of people. Several houses have been damaged in the area where the aircraft crashed as it was a densely-populated residential area.
The final conversation between one of the pilots of the flight and the Air Traffic Controller have been recorded on a flight-tracking website and the audio clip was posted by liveatc.net. The pilot is heard saying that he has lost both engines and then issued the international distress message "Mayday, Mayday, Mayday".
ATC: ...8303, Approach. [This is the ATC calling out to the plane and identifying itself as the approach control]
Pilot: Ji, sir.
ATC: Uh, appear to be turning left.
Pilot: Uh, we are proceeding direct, sir, we have lost engine.
ATC: Confirm you are carrying out belly landing?
ATC: ... runway available to land at two-five. [Two-five is the runway identifier]
Pilot: Sir, mayday, mayday, mayday, Pakistan 830... 3.
ATC: Pakistan 8303, roger sir, both runways available to land.