Huge fright for the 113 passengers and 9 crew members of a flight in China, this Thursday morning. The plane of the Chinese company Tibet Airlines left the runway before catching fire at Chongqing International Airport (southwest of the country), without causing any deaths, according to the company.

All of the people present in the aircraft were evacuated and put “in safety”, indicated the carrier. About forty people, slightly injured, were however taken to hospital, the airport said.

The crew stopped the take-off phase in extremis

The aircraft was to make a domestic flight between Chongqing and Nyingchi in the Tibet Autonomous Region (southwest China) but an incident occurred at 8:09 a.m. local time (00:09 GMT). Video broadcast by public broadcaster CCTV shows the plane on fire on the tarmac, with thick black smoke rising into the sky.

“During the take-off phase, the crew noticed an anomaly and interrupted the procedure. The plane veered off the runway, Tibet Airlines said in a statement. The aircraft was damaged by fire.

Second air accident in China in less than two months

According to the Airfleets.net site, the aircraft is an Airbus A319 whose first flight dates back to the end of 2012. Tibet Airlines has 28 A319s out of a total fleet of 39 aircraft, all produced by the European manufacturer, according to the same source.

This is the second air accident in China in less than two months, after the still unexplained fall of a Boeing 737-800 on March 21 in the Guangxi region (south), which killed 132 people. It was China’s deadliest air disaster in nearly 30 years, despite the country’s generally considered good air safety.

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