Photo: PIA

MIAMI – Today, a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) Airbus A320 (registered AP-BLD) crashed into a residential area on its approach to Karachi Airport (KHI) from Lahore, killing 99 passengers and 8 crew members.

Due to a landing gear extension problem, the pilots on the domestic flight PK8303 went around during their first attempt at landing at KHI.

However, just before attempting their second approach, the pilots reported to air traffic control a “may-day may-day” adding “we ‘re proceeding direct, we’ve lost engines.”

The Pakistan CAA confirmed that the pilots reported undercarriage nose gear issues to ATC and did an initial go around, crashing on its second attempt.

Thereafter, the aircraft burst into flames in the Malir Cantonment neighborhood Jinnah Garden (Model Colony), a suburban area just east of the airport.

Pakistan International Airlines Airbus A320-214

According to, the following is the last communication between pilots and air traffic control:

  • ATC: appear to be turning left
  • Pilot: we are proceeding direct. We have lost engines
  • ATC: runway available to land at 25
  • Pilot: Roger
  • Pilot: Sir Mayday Mayday Mayday Mayday Pakistan 8303
  • ATC: 8303 Roger both runways available to land

Shortly after the accident, members of the Pakistan Army Quick Reation Force and the Pakistan Rangers of the Sindh Army arrived at the site for the emergency relief and rescue actions in conjunction with the civilian emergency services.

A Pakistan Army Aviation helicopter was also flown in to help in damage assessment and rescue operations.

Delivered to China Eastern Airlines (MU) on August 16, 2014 from a lease from GECAS, the Toulouse-manufactured Airbus A320-214, serial number (MSN)2274, took its first flight on August 17, 2004.

On October 30, 2014, it was leased to PIA. The aircraft was 15.8 years old. Its airframe status has been written off.