Passengers on board a Pakistan International Airlines flight had a narrow escape today when one of the aircraft’s tyres caught fire while it was taking off from the airport in Rawalpindi, officials said.

The Governor and Home Secretary of Gilgit-Baltistan region were among the passengers.

The aircraft skidded off the runway after the tyre caught fire this morning, officials said.

All the passengers and crew escaped unhurt, officials said.

The type of aircraft and the exact number of people on the plane could not immediately be ascertained.

The passengers were later sent to Gilgit in another aircraft.

State-run PIA, facing a funds crunch, has been affected by several mishaps over the past few months.

Media reports have highlighted the poor maintenance of PIA’s aircraft.

(This article was published on November 16, 2012)
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