Asiana passenger plane skids off runway in Japan, 22 injured

Osaka: A passenger plane of South Korea's Asiana Airlines skidded off the runway when landing at the Hiroshima Airport in Japan late Tuesday, leaving at least 22 people slightly injured.

The Airbus A320 ran halfway through the runway after landing, skidded off to the left and turned around in the opposite direction before it managed to halt, and fire and smoke were seen coming from the engines, said the Japanese broadcaster NHK.

The wheel of the aircraft might have struck a 6.4-meter-high wireless communication facility near the runway when it landed in the airport, said an official from the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. All of 73 passengers and 8 crewmembers aboard the OZ162 flight managed to leave the plane by using an escape chute after the incident happened.

Among the passengers, 46 are Japanese, nine Chinese, eight South Koreans, two Canadians, two Swedes, two Americans. Some 18 of the injured were sent to four hospitals for treatment, Asiana Airlines said in a statement. The plane, which took off from South Korea's Incheon International Airport, landed at Japan's Hiroshima Airport at about 8:05 p.m. on Tuesday.

Investigators from the Transport Safety Board will arrive in the airport Wednesday while South Korea's transport ministry will send investigators to the airport and the Asiana Airlines to look into the incident, according to Kyodo News. Over 35 domestic flights have been canceled so far Wednesday after runways were shut down since Tuesday night.

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