Pakistani airliner crashes in Karachi

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4:20 p.m. ET, May 22, 2020

What you need to know about the Pakistani airliner crash

A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight crashed Friday in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi, according to Health Minister Azra Fazal. 

Here’s what we know: 

  • At least 76 people are dead: According to a statement from the Sindh Health, at least 76 bodies have been recovered. Speaking at a press conference earlier, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) CEO Air Vice Marshal Arshad Malik said there were 99 people onboard including crew and passengers.
  • Where the plane was going: The flight took off from Lahore and was due to land in Karachi before it disappeared from the radar.
  • Where the plane crashed: The Airbus A320 crashed into the Model Colony neighborhood, next to the airport.
  • Pakistani pilot says he lost engines in mayday call: A pilot on the flight told air traffic control in Karachi he lost engines before the plane crashed on Friday.

In an audio recording of aircraft communications obtained by CNN, from a Pakistani government source, the pilot can be heard speaking with air traffic control about his approach before saying, “We are proceeding direct, we have lost engines.”

Malik, the airlines CEO, said in a news conference Friday that all checks and certifications had been in place, nothing was pending and the airline was operationally and administratively good to go.

Malik could not yet confirm why the accident took place but said there will be a proper inquiry.

Our live coverage of the Pakistani airliner crash in Karachi has ended for the day. Read more about the crash here.

4:33 p.m. ET, May 22, 2020

At least 76 dead in Pakistan plane crash

Fareed Khan/AP
Fareed Khan/AP

At least 76 bodies have been recovered after Pakistan International Airline flight 8303 crashed in Karachi Friday, according to a statement from the Sindh Health Department.

Speaking at a news conference earlier Friday, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) CEO Air Vice Marshal Arshad Malik said there were 99 people onboard including crew and passengers.

2:00 p.m. ET, May 22, 2020

Pakistan plane did not hit building while reason for the crash remains unclear, airline CEO says

A member of a fire brigade tries to put out fire caused by a plane crash in Karachi, Pakistan, on May 22.
A member of a fire brigade tries to put out fire caused by a plane crash in Karachi, Pakistan, on May 22. Fareed Khan/AP

The Pakistan commercial flight did not crash into a building and no bodies of residents have been retrieved, according to Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) CEO Air Vice Marshal Arshad Malik.

Malik said at a news conference in Karachi Friday that they are tracking the number of dead by coordinating with local hospitals which will take at least two days.

All checks and certifications had been in place, nothing was pending and the airline was operationally and administratively good to go, Malik added.

“Air travel is the safest. PIA’s pilots and engineers follow SOPs [standard operating procedures] and are highly qualified A320 is one of the safest planes in the industry," he said.

Malik could not yet confirm why the accident took place but said there will be a proper inquiry.

Some context: There were 99 people including crew and passengers onboard.

The pilot said he was ready to land but then made a second approach when something went wrong. Malik said they will know more about what happened when the flight recorder is retrieved.

12:29 p.m. ET, May 22, 2020

At least 38 dead in Pakistan plane crash

Rescue workers gather at the site after a Pakistan International Airlines flight crashed in a residential neighborhood in Karachi, Pakistan on Friday, May 22. 
Rescue workers gather at the site after a Pakistan International Airlines flight crashed in a residential neighborhood in Karachi, Pakistan on Friday, May 22.  Asif Hassan/AFP/Getty Images

At least 38 people have died after Pakistan International Airline flight 8303 crashed in Karachi Friday, according to Health Minister Azra Fazal Pechuho.

Pakistan's Aviation Ministry said the flight from Lahore was carrying 99 passengers and eight crew members.

However, it's unclear if the 38 victims were all onboard the plane or people who may have been hit at the scene of the crash.

11:44 a.m. ET, May 22, 2020

Pakistani pilot says he lost engines in mayday call with air traffic control

Fareed Khan/AP
Fareed Khan/AP

A pilot on Pakistan International Airline flight 8303 told air traffic control in Karachi he lost engines before the plane crashed on Friday.

In an audio recording of aircraft communications obtained by CNN, from a Pakistani government source, the pilot can be heard speaking with air traffic control about his approach before saying, “We are proceeding direct, we have lost engines.”

The Airbus A320 is a twin engine aircraft.

A spokesman for the government owned airline, Pakistan International Airlines, Abdullah Khan confirms the authenticity of the recording.

On the recording, air traffic control asks the pilot to confirm a belly landing. The pilot’s response is inaudible. 

It is unclear why they are discussing a belly landing. 

A few seconds later the pilot can be heard giving several Mayday calls followed by a response from air traffic control that both runways are clear to land.

The audio then cuts off.

10:01 a.m. ET, May 22, 2020

Pakistani army deploys search and rescue team to Karachi

Pakistan's armed forces have flown a search and rescue team from Rawalpindi to the crash site in Karachi.

"Military ambulances [are] busy in rescuing injured & providing necessary medical care," a military spokesperson said on Twitter.

9:23 a.m. ET, May 22, 2020

Pakistan Red Crescent Society says rescue teams are recovering bodies from crash scene

The Pakistan Red Crescent Society has deployed three ambulances and 25 emergency response force members to help with a rescue and relief operation at the crash site, the organization said on Twitter.

Volunteers are helping recover bodies from the debris, the Red Crescent added.

8:49 a.m. ET, May 22, 2020

Airline chair says plane's pilot reported technical problems

Pakistan International Airlines chairman Arshad Malik has said the plane's pilot reported he was experiencing technical difficulties before the crash.

“It is a very sad incident and I am going to Karachi," he said.

"The last voice we heard of the [c]aptain was [that] we have a technical problem. He said this from final approach, he was told we are ready for landing, both strips are free and you can land but [he] decided to go-round.

"What was the reason, what was the tactical issue? We will investigate."

8:30 a.m. ET, May 22, 2020

At least 11 bodies brought to one Karachi hospital

Rescue workers recover the body of a crash victim.
Rescue workers recover the body of a crash victim. Asif Hassan/AFP/Getty Images

At least 11 bodies from the scene of the Karachi plane crash have been brought to Jinnah Hospital, according to hospital spokesperson Seemi Jamali. 

It is unclear if those fatalities involve victims from the ground or the plane.