Cebu Pacific plane swerves off runway in Iloilo

Davinci Maru, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 14 2017 01:46 AM | Updated as of Oct 15 2017 12:42 AM

Photo courtesy of Loui Latoza

Cebu Pacific: All passengers safe

(2ND UPDATE) A Cebu Pacific aircraft carrying 180 passengers veered off the runway of the Iloilo International Airport late Friday night.

The airline, in a statement, said an incident occurred involving Flight 5J 461 upon landing at the airport at 11:15 p.m. The A320 aircraft arrived from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

"The crew initiated emergency evacuation. All passengers are accounted for and are safe. They are being attended to by airport personnel," the statement added. It did not give additional details.

In a Notice to Airmen released Saturday morning, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) shut down operations at the airport after the Cebu Pacific "aircraft's nose gear landed on a soft spot at the end of runway."

In a later notice, the CAAP called the incident a "runway excursion."

One of the passengers, Loui Latoza, told ABS-CBN News that the aircraft failed to stop after it landed at the Iloilo International Airport.

"Yung pilot nag-advise na mag-prepare for landing. Nagulat lang kami lahat kasi parang ang lakas ng bagsak namin. It was a very unusual landing kasi sunod sunod na parang dumaan ka sa rough road hanggang sa masubsob na kami nang biglang preno," she said.

Latoza said the passengers stayed inside the aircraft for at least 20 minutes while waiting for assistance from airport personnel until everyone was rescued using a slide.

"We were all praises kasi buhay kami lahat. Hindi maiiwasan na may magra-rant, but the airline crew handled it well. They prioritized the elderly and children," she said when asked of the experience, which she considers as a second chance at life.

The passengers, Latoza said, were also immediately given blankets, food, and water.

She came from a vacation in Hong Kong with her friends. She said their baggage will be distributed today, Sunday.

Another passenger told ABS-CBN News that their flight was delayed. 

They were supposed to depart at 8:35 p.m, but only left NAIA 3 past 10 p.m. The passenger requested not to be identified. - with reports from Joyce Anne Clavecillas, ABS-CBN News

(Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story said the plane overshot the runway.)