A plane of Delta Air Lines Inc. skidded off the runway at the LaGuardia Airport due to a strong wind and snow storm that caused the closure of the airport, and business establishments and offices right from New York to Washington.
As per the news release from Delta, the MD88 aircraft carrying five crew members and 125 passenger from Atlanta, after the skidding incident which took place around 11 am, had to be evacuated immediately thereafter. Everyone on board had been examined for injury, if any, and none had to be hospitalized, as per the New York fire Department. There had been some bumps and bruises, but not serious enough to warrant hospitalization. Television images showed passengers hurrying out of the plane into the snowstorm outside as the aircraft had nose dived into the fence of the runway.
The runway 13 from which the plane skidded is 2100 meters long, goes towards the southeast. If a plane goes too far ahead it will go up to the flushing Bay. That end has a crushable foam layer which aims at stopping planes from going off the pavement. As per the Federal Aviation Administration, the arrangement is designed to prevent planes from going off the runway through the brake mechanism. However, this end does not have the mandatory 1000 feet safety zone.
The storm that lashed the airport on Thursday was the third in only four days in the New York area. Commerce in the city was abysmally slow as a road side vendor who had been selling rolls in his cart for around 10 years now. He added that he had not witnessed such a bad weather condition during his entire business period, i.e. for the last 10 years.