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Scary landing at California airport as jet’s landing gear collapses during Tropical Storm Hilary

Scary landing at California airport as jet’s landing gear collapses during Tropical Storm Hilary

Passengers on an Alaska Airlines flight to Orange County were shaken but unhurt when the plane’s landing gear collapsed shortly after touching down during Tropical Storm Hilary.

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The Boeing 737 experienced “an issue with its landing gear” after landing at John Wayne Airport at 11:15 p.m. Sunday, the airline said in a statement.

A passenger returning home on the flight from Seattle recorded a video of bright white sparks flying over a rainy runway as the engine appeared to scrape across the ground.

“I was panicking,” Abhinav Amineni, an Orange County high school student who shot the video, told KABC-TV. “When I first saw the sparks I thought the plane was going to catch on fire.”

Alaska said the jet was unable to taxi to the gate and parked on a taxiway, where everyone exited and took busses to the terminal. Photos showed the left engine resting on the ground.

A brief description of the incident on a Federal Aviation Administration website stated that the aircraft’s left main gear collapsed. The entry listed no injuries.

Passengers are escorted off an Alaska Airlines plane after its landing gear collapsed while touching down Sunday at John Wayne Airport in Orange County. (Photo courtesy Orange County Fire Authority) 

The National Transportation Safety Board was collecting information about the event but did not immediately launch an investigation, spokesperson Sarah Taylor Sulick said in an email Tuesday.