A Nok Air plane has successfully been removed from a runway at Mae Fah Luang International Airport in Chiang Rai province, following an incident that prompted the facility to close for almost a week.
According to a report, the recovery team towed Nok Air’s Boeing 737-800 plane out of the runway early on August 4th. The Don Mueang-Chiang Rai flight, carrying 164 passengers and six crew members, went off the runway after landing in heavy rain on the night of July 30th.
The airplane, with damaged front landing gear, remained stranded in soft soil off the runway for several days as workers and engineers worked to remove it so the runway could be reopened for flights again. The aircraft removal process, however, experienced delays forcing the airport to shut down for 5 days.
To prevent further damage to the plane, Airports of Thailand (AOT) President Nitinai Sirismatthakarn said all personnel responsible for moving the aircraft were licensed engineers with expertise in the specific aircraft model.
Nok Air also reached out to Thai Airways’ recovery team to supervise the moving process and assist with using special equipment according to the aircraft recovery manual.
Nitinai affirmed that Chiang Rai International Airport adopted the government-certified emergency response plan to ensure passenger safety and prevent the rescue personnel from sustaining injuries during the moving process.
Despite dealing with many technical difficulties in moving the stranded Boeing 737, the AOT president added that the agency, along with Nok Air and other responsible units, worked diligently to allow the airport to resume operations while strictly adhering to safety regulations imposed by the International Civil Aviation Organization.