Accident at Lima Airport: This Is What We Know

Lima Airport Partners (LAP) said work is underway to remove debris following a collision between a Latam Peru’s aircraft and a fire truck

According to LAP, the Aviation Accident Investigation Commission is working to determine the causes of the accident and supervising the remotion of debris from the runway.
November 19, 2022 | 01:15 PM

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Lima — Peru’s main airports reported disruptions after Lima’s Jorge Chavez International Airport closed its operations following a collision between a Latam Airlines Peru plane and a fire truck that left two people dead.

Lima Airport Partners (LAP) issued a press release stating that it will extend the suspension of flights until midnight tonight (00:00 hours on Sunday, November 20), as a result of ongoing investigations. There are more than 100 canceled flights awaiting rescheduling, according to the airport website.

“We express our deepest regret for the loss of the lives of two firefighters. We are closely following the evolution of the health condition of our third injured aeronautical firefighter,” LAP said in a statement on Saturday, following the death of two aeronautical firefighters who were aboard the vehicle that collided with the Latam Peru plane.

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According to LAP, the Aviation Accident Investigation Commission (CIAA) of the Ministry of Transport and Communications is working to determine the causes of the accident and supervising works to remove debris from the runway. “Although works are being carried out intensively by the airline in close cooperation with LAP and the authorities, this is taking longer than estimated due to the complexity of the accident and the handling of the ensuing fuel spill,” the company said.

Press release by LAP.dfd

Several passengers who were to fly Friday and Saturday are still at the airports of Lima, Arequipa, Cusco, among others, awaiting rescheduling and the reopening of Jorge Chavez airport.

Lima Airport Partners, operator of Jorge Chávez airport —the largest in the country, essential for air connections—, said that work is being carried out to remove the debris from the accident, including the Latam Airlines aircraft to resume runway operations.

“We are also inspecting the operation of the runway. We hope to complete these actions to resume operations in the shortest possible time”, said the company.

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Support to passengers

The accident between the Latam A320 aircraft and the aeronautical firefighting vehicle happened Friday, November 18, 2022, at approximately 2:48 p.m. 102 passengers and six crew members were evacuated and treated promptly.

The plane was departing from Lima airport to the city of Juliaca, in the Puno region. A firefighting vehicle hit the right engine of the aircraft, and the crew triggered the emergency evacuation protocol taking the passengers to the terminal for attention, said the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MTC).

A Latam Airlines plane is evacuated on the runway at Jorge Chavez airport in Callao, Lima, Peru. dfd

It is still unknown why the aeronautical fire truck was on the runway while the Latam Airlines Peru plane was taking off. Latam Airlines Peru’s CEO, Manuel Van Oordt, said Friday night that no emergency had been reported on the flight which was cleared for take-off.

“We don’t know what it was doing there,” Van Oordt referred to the fire truck. “It has to be investigated,” he added.

He said that all passengers affected by the airport’s shutdown will be offered flexible travel arrangements. “Each case is different, expenses will be assumed, we are providing travel options”, said the executive.

According to the airline, this is what passengers affected by the closure of LAP’s Jorge Chávez airport flying to or from Lima on Latam Peru should take into account:

  • Passengers with flights to and from Lima, as well as those connecting through this air terminal between Friday, November 18 and Monday, November 21, will be able to change the date up to 15 days from the original flight date, with no fare difference or penalty, or they may request a full refund of their money.
  • The incident has generated an unusual number of telephone calls, so passengers are advised to attend to their requests in the “My Trips” section on LATAM.com.