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Chinese plane windshield pops out mid-flight

15 May 2018
Chinese plane windshield pops out mid-flight

A Sichuan Airlines flight had to make an emergency landing on Monday after the cockpit's windshield broke off at 32,000 feet, causing a co-pilot to be sucked partially out of the plane.

However, according to the website of Civil Aviation Administration of China's (CAAC) Southwest Regional Administration, the co-pilot and a cabin crew of the flight suffered minor injuries. Reports out of China suggest the co-pilot received scratches and a "waist sprain" but somehow avoided a more serious injury.

Captain Liu Chuanjian's heroic actions moments after a cockpit windshield blew out on Monday, almost pulling his co-pilot from the Airbus A319, has won him praise from flight professionals and internet readers for saving over 100 people onboard. "When I looked over, the co-pilot's body's was hanging halfway out of the window".

Mr Chuanjian, who was hailed a hero after landing the Airbus A319 manually in China, said: 'There was no warning sign.

While authorities continue to investigate the accident, Sichuan Airlines noted that the flight had experienced a "mechanical failure".

The Sichuan Airlines plane, 3U8633, was scheduled to fly from Chongqing to Lhasa.

The plane is reported to have experienced a rapid descent following the incident, but it managed to land at an airport in Chengdu about 40 minutes later.

"The windshield cracked suddenly and gave a huge bang".

Pictures of the plane posted by users of the Chinese social media platform Weibo showed damaged controls and the missing cockpit window.

Mobile phone footage emerged online showing flight attendants asking passengers to wear oxygen masks and put on safety belts.

Mr Liu had to land the Airbus A319 immediately, a task made more hard because the instruments malfunctioned and it was too loud to use the radio.

None of the plane's 119 passengers were injured. He said anything that was not screwed down was "floating in the air".

The aircraft was delivered new to Sichuan Airlines in June 2011. This incident is very odd and only further investigation will lead to a resolution, Zhang added. On May 3, another Southwest Airlines flight made an emergency landing after a cabin window pane cracked in flight.