On June 8, 1995, a mechanical failure in an engine caused a fire aboard a passenger jet at Atlanta Georgia’s Hartsfield International Airport. The failure occurred just as the aircraft had begun to accelerate for takeoff, and it was able to stop on the runway, and all 57 passengers and five crewmembers escaped. Five passengers, two crewmembers, and two firefighters were injured, and one of the aircrew members sustained serious injuries.
The survival of passengers and crew was directly related to their ability to react and to the egress provisions that were available to them. Before the arrival of firefighters, passengers faced a severe threat, and using the door and over-wing exits, all were able to escape. This incident also highlights one of the most severe challenges facing airport firefighters, because attempts to extinguish the fire were thwarted by the magnitude of the fire inside the cabin and the obstruction afforded by the aircraft’s fuselage.
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