A Boeing 737-800 arriving in Jacksonville from Guantanamo Bay has reportedly landed in a river after sliding off a runway.
In a report by The Florida Times-Union, the incident at Naval Air Station Jacksonville occurred about 9:40pm local time on 3 May, when a Boeing jet on its way from Naval Station Guantanamo Bay in Cuba slid into the St Johns River at the end of NAS Jacksonville’s runway.
Base officials said there were 136 passengers and seven air crew on board, all accounted for as Navy security and emergency response personnel remained on the scene to monitor the situation.
Addressing the press, Captain Michael Connor, the commanding officer at NAS Jacksonville, believed the outcome of the incident was a “miracle” and that it could have been a lot worse.
“We could be talking about a different story this evening,” Connor says. “I think there’s a lot to say about the professionalism of the folks that helped the passengers off the aeroplane.”
Fire department spokesperson Tom Francis told The Times-Union that he identified the Boeing 737-800 as a chartered aircraft from Miami Air International; rescue units transported 21 adults from the site to area hospitals.
“The 21 individuals we transported were all listed in good condition, no critical injuries sustained,” Francis said.
Officials didn’t immediately say what caused the plane to leave the runway, while Boeing posted its awareness of the incident.
We are aware of an incident in Jacksonville, Fla. and are gathering information.
— Boeing Airplanes (@BoeingAirplanes) May 4, 2019