A British Airways 747-400 aircraft crashed into a building whilst taxiing at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport last night.

Images taken by passengers on the 747, tail number G-BNLL, show that the wing had sliced through the second floor of a two story airport building.

© Twitter user @harriettolputt
© Twitter user @HarrietTolputt

Four airport workers are reported to have been hurt in the incident.

Reports from the aircraft indicate that the passengers and crew were all unharmed, if a little shaken up.

A British Airways statement said that “The 182 customers disembarked safely and there were no reported injuries onboard the aircraft,” BA says. “Customers were looked after by our staff and provided with hotel accommodation and we are arranging alternative flights for them.”

The South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) are carrying out an investigation as it appears that the aircraft was on the wrong taxi way.

The SACAA’s Phindiwe Gwebu says, “The Boeing 747 got instructions to takeoff from runway 03L and the crew were instructed to use Taxi Way B, instead they used Taxi Way M, which is too small for that type of aircraft.”

Flight BA34 had been due to travel from Johannesburg OR Tambo International Airport to London Heathrow Airport. It us expected that most passengers will now leave on flights this evening.The aircraft involved in the incident is shown below:

G-BNLL - Image © Andrew Smith - pinkfroot.com
G-BNLL – Image © Andrew Smith – pinkfroot.com

You can see the flight history of G-BNLL here on planefinder:  http://planefinder.net/data/airplanes/G-BNLL

Hopefully the damage is not too severe and we’ll be tracking the aircraft out of Johannesburg in 2014.

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