British Airways Boeing 777 catches fire at Las Vegas airport; 2 injured


(CNN) — A fire broke out Tuesday on an outbound British Airways flight at the Las Vegas airport, leading two people to be transported for medical care for what the airport called “minor injuries.”

The incident occurred shortly after 4 p.m. (7 p.m. ET) and involved British Airways Flight 2276, which was bound for London’s Gatwick Airport, according to the McCarran International Airport’s Twitter feed.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the aircraft’s left engine caught fire, prompting the crew to abort the takeoff.

The Boeing 777 had 159 passengers and 13 crew members aboard at the time.

Photos at one point showed large plumes of black smoke engulfing the aircraft. That’s what Bradley Hampton saw from the plane he was on, about 200 to 300 yards away.

Hampton told CNN that he didn’t know whether any passengers were on the British Airways jet — until “all of a sudden, we saw the doors fly open and the slides inflate.”

“At that time, we saw droves of people jumping out of a slide and running across the runway away from the plane,” he said.

First responders arrived moments later, according to Hampton. The airport tweeted that the fire was out and all passengers were off the plane by 4:18 p.m. — just five minutes after the first call came in.

The incident spurred McCarran to close one of its runways, the airport added. Hampton said that his own plane, as well as others, “were completely at a standstill” for some time as the situation played out.

Aerial video showed the aircraft on the tarmac, with firetrucks nearby and several slides coming out of the plane that passengers used to exit and board buses that took them to the terminal.

CNN’s Steve Almasy contributed to this report.

Video still courtesy KSNV/CNN
Video still courtesy KSNV/CNN

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