Lao ministry investigates on-ground collision at Wattay airport

VIENTIANE (Vientiane Times/ANN) - The Ministry of Public Works and Transport has formed a special committee to investigate a collision on the Wattay International Airport tarmac on Monday between a Thai Airways Airbus A330-300 and a private jet.

The accident occurred at 8:26 pm while flight TG 575 was on the taxiway. The collision caused damage to the wing of the Airbus and the tail of the parked private jet.

Fortunately, no injuries were reported amongst passengers and crew.

“We have formed a special accident investigation committee to ascertain the facts and this team is now collecting information and evidence,” a representative of the ministry’s Department of Civil Aviation said.

“The Lao investigation team will work in cooperation with investigators from Thai Airways. We expect the inquiry to be completed by the end of this week or early next week, with the cause of the accident to be announced soon after,” the official, who wished to remain anonymous, added.

The private jet belongs to a businessman in Laos and was imported earlier this month and parked at the airport. Local officials said the accident was the first case of an on-tarmac collision at Wattay International Airport.

“We can confirm that the airport is operating in line with international standards,” the Civil Aviation representative said.

Both the Airbus and the private jet are grounded while an assessment of repairs and the damage bill is evaluated.

According to Thai Airways, flight TG 575 was scheduled to take off from Vientiane at 8:30 pm and land at Bangkok at 9:35 pm on Monday.

The flight had 79 passengers and 13 crew onboard who stayed overnight in a Vientiane hotel before taking another flight to Bangkok yesterday.

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