US & World

Plane skids off runway in Turkey and onto cliff's edge

A Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 passenger plane is seen struck in mud on an embankment, after skidding off the airstrip while landing at Trabzon Airport in Turkey on January 13, 2018.
A Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 passenger plane is seen struck in mud on an embankment, after skidding off the airstrip while landing at Trabzon Airport in Turkey on January 13, 2018.
-/AFP/Getty Images

Chaos and panic broke out aboard a Turkish plane that skidded off the runway, slid down the edge of a cliff and stopped just short of plunging into the Black Sea.

But despite the terrifying landing Saturday night, everyone on board, including 162 passengers and crew, safely evacuated the Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737-800 flying from Ankara to the coastal Turkish airport in Trabzon.

A Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 passenger plane is seen stuck in mud on an embankment, a day after skidding off the airstrip, after landing at Trabzon Airport on Turkey's Black Sea coast on January 13.
A Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 passenger plane is seen stuck in mud on an embankment, a day after skidding off the airstrip, after landing at Trabzon Airport on Turkey's Black Sea coast on January 13.
STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images

Footage taken inside the plane moments after the accident appears to show panicked passengers trying to get out, while crew members offer instructions. A baby can be heard wailing in the background.

The BBC says passenger Fatma Gordu described a chaotic scene.

"We tilted to the side, the front was down while the plane's rear was up. There was panic; people shouting, screaming," Gordu said.

A Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 passenger plane is seen struck in mud on an embankment, after skidding off the airstrip while landing at Trabzon Airport in Turkey on January 13, 2018.
A Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737 passenger plane is seen struck in mud on an embankment, after skidding off the airstrip while landing at Trabzon Airport in Turkey on January 13, 2018.
-/AFP/Getty Images

In a statement, Pegasus Airlines explained the plane "had a runway excursion incident" as it landed, without delving into what caused the aircraft to careen off the tarmac and end up, clinging nose first down the cliff.

The Independent reports the only thing that prevented the Boeing 737-800 from plummeting into the water was that its wheels got stuck in the mud.

A US Boeing 737 for Pegasus Airlines flies over southwestern France, on May 11, 2012.
A US Boeing 737 for Pegasus Airlines flies over southwestern France, on May 11, 2012.
PASCAL PAVANI/AFP/Getty Images
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