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Southwest jetliner hits, kills person during landing

Victim was not dressed as airline worker, officials say

File photo. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)
File photo. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File) (Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

AUSTIN, Texas – A Southwest Airlines jetliner hit and killed a person upon landing Thursday night at Austin’s main airport, CBS News reported.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the pilot of Flight 1392 reported seeing a person on the runway shortly after the Boeing 737 touched down at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. Southwest said the pilot tried to avoid the person, whose name wasn’t immediately released.

Austin police said the victim was not dressed as an airport worker and didn’t have any identification. The airport said the victim was an “unauthorized individual.”

The plane was carrying 53 passengers and five crew members, but no one on board was hurt, CBS News reported.

CBS News obtained a photo that shows a large dent on the housing of the plane’s left engine.

Southwest released a statement about the incident:

Southwest flight #1392 arrived safely this evening at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) after being cleared to land on runway 17R. The Southwest aircraft maneuvered to avoid an individual who became visible on runway 17R shortly after touchdown. The aircraft quickly came to a safe stop, and the Pilots reported the event to local air traffic controllers. After receiving further instructions from controllers, the aircraft taxied to a gate where all Customers and Crew deplaned the aircraft safely with no reports of onboard injuries. Tonight’s flight landed at 8:12 p.m. CDT, after arriving from Dallas Love Field (DAL). Southwest is fully cooperating with local law enforcement and FAA as those agencies investigate the event. We sincerely thank our Crew for their professionalism and swift response.

The FAA will investigate.