A Korean Air Airbus A330 has overrun the runaway at Cebu City on its third attempt to land in bad weather.

Korean Air Flight KE631 departed from Incheon International Airport, Seoul, South Korea, to Mactan-Cebu International Airport, Cebu, Philippines. After three attempts of landing the aircraft under adverse weather, the airliner skidded off at the end of runway 22 after landing at Cebu International Airport.

Images on social media show the aircraft’s nose landing gear has collapsed and torn down the nose section of the aircraft. A torn hole has also been discovered on its upper fuselage. The landing also damaged the approach lights of the runway.

The subject aircraft (registration: HL7525), was delivered to Korean Air in June, 1998, with a capacity of 276 passengers, making it an ideal aircraft for the airline’s regional network. Currently, Korean Air has 21 in-service A330-300s, with 5 A330-200 series.

Korean Air has confirmed the incident, saying that “there were no injuries and all 173 souls on board have safely evacuated the aircraft and been escorted to three local hotels.”

“An alternative flight is also being arranged,” the airline added.

According to flight tracking data, the aircraft attempted to land twice before suffering a runway excursion. A commercial pilot has shared an opinion with us that the flight was expected to use the standard terminal arrival route (STAR) of LARYO3R arrival, but after the waypoint “LARYO”, a radar vector was given to waypoint “GOLDA” for the initial approach. They followed the standard missed approach procedure and were directed to the waypoint “ALMAR” for the published holding pattern before further attempts on its third attempt at around 23:08 local time.

Information shown the flight path of the Arrival route and the STAR of approaching the airport
Information shown the flight path of the Arrival route of approaching the airport ( Source: Flightradar24 & Navigraph)

The METAR Meteorological information from Cebu indicates that cumulonimbus clouds with thunderstorms and rain showers have been reported. However, the weather condition is below minima and technically capable for an airbus A330 to conduct low visibility operation.

The Aviation Weather report for the time of the accident
The Aviation Weather report for the time of the accident

A brief statement on the airline’s social media pages from the president, Keehong Woo, says a thorough investigation will be performed together with the local aviation authorities and Korean authorities to determine the cause of the event.

  • I guess there are no local Airbus repair shops in Cebu? just a few scratches – it’ll buff out …….

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