Passengers evacuated as runway planes crash

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The Independent Online

Two planes collided on a runway at Manchester airport yesterday while taxi-ing to take off.

The tail of a Boeing 737, which was carrying 79 passengers, clipped the wing of an Excel Airways 767, which had 255 passengers on board.

Both aircraft were on the ground preparing to depart on runway two at 4.27pm.

There were no reported casualties. Emergency services attended and passengers from both planes were evacuated.

Excel Airways flight XLA 340 was departing to Goa. The other plane, bmibaby flight WW3007, was on its way to Belfast International. Bmibaby is the low-cost unit of the UK's third-largest airline, British Midland Airways.

"All passengers have been taken off the planes by the steps and bused out to a lounge," a spokeswoman said.

An investigation has begun and the passengers were allocated alternative aircraft.