By Barbara Goldberg and Jonathan Allen
NEW YORK, July 22 Eight people were injured on
Monday when the landing gear on a Southwest Airlines jet
collapsed upon touchdown at New York City's LaGuardia Airport,
LaGuardia, one of the area's busiest airports, was closed
for more than an hour after the Boeing 737 jet landed
with its 150 passengers and crew at around 5:45 p.m. EDT (2145
Emergency vehicles surrounded the aircraft and emergency
passenger exits were lowered, TV images showed.
"The aircraft landed on runway 4 and the landing gear
collapsed, the nose wheel collapsed," Thomas Bosco, the
airport's general manager, told reporters.
Passengers on the flight described a rough touchdown.
"It was just a bang and a bounce and then just a slam on the
brakes and then it was a skidding feeling. You could tell they
were trying to stop the plane," Kathy Boles told CNN. "It was
very clear as soon as we went down that something was really
Port Authority spokeswoman Lisa MacSpadden said those hurt
during the landing suffered back and neck injuries.
The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are
investigating the incident.
Southwest said in a statement that all the passengers and
crew had been evacuated from the plane, which took off from
Nashville, Tennessee. Airline spokeswoman Whitney Eichinger said
the jet had been inspected on July 18.
NTSB spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said the agency "will gather
more information on the incident from the FAA and the operator
and assess the damage to the airplane. From there, decisions
will be made regarding any further investigative activity from
It was the latest in a string of incidents involving Boeing
aircraft, which has faced a rash of problems with the recently
launched 787 Dreamliner aircraft.
Scott Hamilton, an aviation analyst with Leeham Co, said the
incident had no connection with Boeing's recent 787 woes.
"I would characterize this as just another incident. There
are tens of thousands of flights worldwide every day, and things
happen," Hamilton said.
Spokesmen for Boeing and United Technologies Corp, a
unit of which made the plane's landing gear, said their
companies would also probe the incident.
Early this month a Boeing 777 operated by Asiana Airlines
plane crashed in San Francisco. Three people were killed and
more than 150 were injured.
Boeing's Dreamliner was grounded for 3-1/2 months earlier
this year after batteries in the plane emitted smoke and in one
case caught fire.
Last week, a Japan Airlines Co Ltd 787 returned to
Boston's Logan International Airport after a mechanical
indicator light came on. Earlier this month, a fire broke out in
a Dreamliner on the ground at London's Heathrow airport.