Four years after an Asiana Airlines plane slammed into the runway at San Francisco International Airport, new video has surfaced online, showing the dramatic crash and the frantic rescue effort around the smoldering jet.
The 47-minute video appears to have been recorded by a surveillance camera posted at an airport control tower. It was published June 28 on YouTube’s “What You Haven’t Seen” channel, and by late Wednesday, it had racked up nearly 40,000 views.
Jon Ballesteros, a spokesman for the airport, confirmed the authenticity of the video in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle. Investigators and staff doing safety training had used the video, but officials said they were uncertain how it wound up published online, he told the newspaper.
The clip — which bears a “don’t distribute” marking — opens at 11:27 a.m. and shows a cluster of airplanes parked at the terminal. In the distance, a dark speck, Asiana Airlines Flight 214, is seen descending over the ocean and approaching the ground.
The Boeing 777 clipped a seawall and then smashed into the tarmac. On the video, the plane skids down the runway, kicking up clouds of dust and chunks of the pavement. At one point, the plane tumbles.
By 11:29 a.m., inflatable evacuation slides unfurl from the airliner and passengers ride down. Others are seen walking across the wings as a plume of black smoke rises from the burning jet.
The first emergency responders arrived a minute later.
More than 180 of the 307 passengers and crew members aboard the flight were injured, and three were killed.
An investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board concluded that when pilots reduced the plane’s altitude for the approach, they inadvertently turned off the automatic throttle. The plane then dipped below the required speed and altitude for a safe landing, causing it to hit the airport’s seawall.
The NTSB also pointed to contributing factors, including the Boeing’s computer system and pilots’ fatigue over the long flight from South Korea.