March 9, 2011
Philippine Airlines flight number PR 124 bound for Manila, was supposed to leave at 6:55 am and was turning slowly for take off, when its left wheel fell off the concrete runway towards the mud.
The plane was not able to get off the mud and the passengers were requested to temporarily wait back at the pre-departure area for further announcement until they were told that their flight together with all others were canceled for the day.
The plane was carrying at least 90 passengers. No one was injured in the incident.
Airport Manager Celso Bayabos this was the first incident that an aircraft taking off from the Zamboanga City Airport runway got stranded in the mud. He called the incident a "runway obstruction" after it effectively closes the runway for the entire day.
Capt. Amado Soliman of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) said that Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) was immediately circulated advising airlines that Zamboanga International Airport is closed to air traffic since 7:05 am.
Soliman said PAL is coordinating with authorities, particularly the US Air Force who are based at Zamboanga airport to lend them towing equipment to remove the plane off the mud.
Meanwhile, another PAL plane also bound for Manila was delayed for at least seven hours in Cebu after its Airbus 330-300 reported an oxygen leak in the cockpit.
No one was reported hurt, but the delay caused inconvenience to more than 200 passengers bound for Manila.
PR Flight 848 was supposed to leave the Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA) in Lapu-Lapu City at 9:05 a.m. Wednsday but left at 4:30 p.m. due to the leaking problem.
The plane arrived safely in Manila at 5:15 p.m., while the plane in Zamboanga is expected to fly back tomorrow morning.