One of the two survivors of the crash, as well as the other survivor’s sister, described the dramatic moments of the escape from the burning plane after it crashed in a residential area of Karachi.
Mohammad Zubayr remembers the first moments after the crash of the plane, the smell of fuel and the voices of other passengers as the cabin was engulfed in flames.
As he tried to untie his belt, the fire reached under his seat. “I saw a light and went to it. I reached a hole and jumped on the wing and then on the ground, “he describes.
The Pakistan Airlines Airbus carried 99 passengers. It had taken off from Lahore and crashed in a densely populated area of Karachi, after two failed landing attempts.
So far, authorities have announced the deaths of 97 people. Most of the bodies have been cremated to such an extent that only 19 of them were easily identified.
About 20 houses in the densely populated neighborhood of Model Colony in Karachi were destroyed by the crash. According to the Guardian, no one was killed on the ground. Some locals are suffering from severe injuries.
Zubair, a 24-year-old engineer, spoke to the Guardian from a hospital in Karachi, where he was being treated for burns to his hands and feet. He said at first he thought there were just riots, but as they approached the ground he realized that something was wrong.
“We approached the ground twice, but then for some reason, the plane couldn’t stop and went up again.”
“He was miraculously saved”
The second survivor is Zafar Massoud, chairman of Punjab Bank. He survived with a broken arm and some bruises.
His sister told him it was a miracle he survived. “The only thing he remembers is the turmoil and then he lost consciousness. I think his seat was somehow thrown out of the plane because they found him away from the wreckage and the fire. ”
“And then people came up to him, either residents or rescuers. They were heroes. They shook him and helped him get up and then he realized that he had broken his arm but he was alive.”
The plane crash happened on the eve of the Indian festival al-Fitr, when many Pakistanis travel to visit relatives. For 97 families, however, it will be a time of mourning.
When 38-year-old Usama Kuresi learned that his friend Zayn Polani was on the flight, he ran to the nearest hospital and stayed outside the morgue for 7 hours, waiting for news and seeing the bodies arrive one after the other.
“The first 15 bodies they brought were whole or in two pieces. But then they were just burned to pieces, “he describes.
His friend’s body has not yet been identified.