UPDATE 2-BA plane's undercarriage fails on landing, 4 hurt

Fri Feb 13, 2009 10:11pm GMT

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(Adds BA, passenger comments)

LONDON Feb 13 (Reuters) - Passengers used emergency slides to evacuate a British Airways BAY.L plane when its nosewheel collapsed on landing at London's City airport on Friday, injuring four people, officials said.

The front undercarriage failed when BA flight 8456 from Amsterdam landed at the east London airport on Friday evening with 67 passengers and four crew on board, the airline said.

"As a precaution, the emergency slides were deployed and the passengers were evacuated down the slides onto the runway," BA said in a statement.

A passenger was taken to hospital with a minor injury and one other minor injury was reported, BA said.

The London Ambulance Service, which sent six ambulance crews to the airport, said four people were treated at the scene for minor injuries.

A BA spokeswoman said the plane was an RJ-100, a model manufactured by BAE Systems (BAES.L).

Passenger Justin Fletcher told BBC Television: "It appeared that it was coming in a bit quicker, and on landing the front wheel collapsed."

"There was obviously quite a loud bang as the plane scraped in. Afterwards the stewards and stewardesses were quick to evacuate everyone," he said. "Everyone was quite calm and handled it all quite well."

Reuters photographer Andrew Winning, at the scene, said the plane had come to a halt half-way down the runway, slumped on its nose, with its emergency chutes out. The plane was ringed by several emergency vehicles.

A Fire Brigade spokeswoman said the passengers and crew got out of the plane before emergency services arrived. There was no fire and the Fire Brigade did not have to intervene, she said.

A City airport spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment, but Sky News said the airport was closed. (Reporting by Adrian Croft and Dominic Evans; Editing by Matthew Jones)

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