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Fortunate to be alive, says Mangalore air crash survivor

Mangalore: “It has been a hair raising experience and I am fortunate to be still alive,” says Umar Farooq, one of the lucky survivors of the fatal Air India aircraft crash in Mangalore.

Farooq, who suffered burns on his face and hands, managed to jump out of the aircraft as it caught fire after one of its wings hit a hillock before landing at Kenjar near Mangalore.

He said the aircraft experienced turbulence and crashed in a forest area.

“The aircraft was full. But I don’t know the number of passengers on board,” he said, adding he heard a loud thud.

There was a commotion after the aircraft caught fire and smoke engulfed it, he said, adding “I saw a broken passage in the aircraft and I jumped out of it.”

He said he walked for about half a kilometre inside the rocky terrain and locals who saw him took him on a motorcycle for some distance, before rushing him to a hospital by an autorickshaw.

Farooq is among the eight surviving passengers.

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