DALLAS – A Red Air (L5) McDonnell Douglas MD-82 was involved in a major incident at Miami International Airport (MIA).
Flight L5203, operated by an MD-82 registered as HI1064, arrived this afternoon from Santo Domingo’s Las Americas Airport (SDQ), Dominican Republic. After touching down, the MD-82 collided with several objects and steered off runaway 9 into the grassy area between the runway and the taxiway.
The MD-82 destroyed a communications/radar tower as well as a small building in its path. The tower could be seen wrapped around the plane’s right wing, both on fire. According to planespotters.net, the aircraft is 31.6 years old.
There are no official reports as to the cause of the accident, but MIA stated via Twitter that the aircraft “had its landing gear in the nose of the plane collapse, which seems to have caused a fire.” Firefighters arrived on the scene swiftly and used foam vehicles to quickly put out the fire.
According to initial reports, about 140 people and 11 crew members that were on board were safely evacuated. However, three individuals were sent to the hospital, according to Miami-Dade Fire Rescue.
Red Air air officially launched in December 2021 as the fourth airline in the Dominican Republic. According to aviaciononline.com, CEO Héctor Gómez explained that the airline plans to operate seven destinations in five countries this year in the first stage of a three-phase strategy to be developed over the next two years.
Initially, L5 will have four McDonnell Douglas MD-81s and MD-82s with a 12-seat configuration in business class and 137 seats in economy class. L5’s operation involved in the accident consists of flights between SDQ and MIA with two daily non-scheduled services, providing 2,000 seats per week.
The airline is authorized to fly in the US to MIA and Tampa (TPA), Florida; plus San José (SJO), Costa Rica; Medellín (MDE) and Cartagena (CTG), Colombia; Panamá (PTY); and Caracas (CCS), Venezuela.
This is a developing story.
Featured image: Miami-Dade Fire Rescue via Twitter