Aeropostal DC-9 rips engine in hard landing

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A McDonnell Douglas DC-9 operated by Venezuela's Aeropostal made a hard landing at an airport in eastern Venezuela today, ripping off both of its Pratt & Whitney JT8D engines in the process.

The aircraft, registration YV-136T, was carrying 125 passengers and five crew members on a flight from Caracas to Manuel Carlos Piar Guayana airport in Puerto Ordaz, said the emergency service centre of eastern Bolivar state on its Twitter feed. Seventeen passengers were injured, it added.

Photos posted by the agency show the severely damaged right-hand engine of the aircraft, which had separated from the fuselage. The centre said the engine had suffered a "mechanical failure" but did not elaborate. A statement from Venezuela's transport of ministry said both engines came apart from the aircraft body.

The aircraft involved in the incident was built in 1976, Flightglobal's ACAS database showed. It has logged 66,012h and 65,814 cycles.