New Delhi: The Air India Express plane, which crashed at Mangalore airport Saturday, was adhering to standard landing procedures while in the air and had been given landing clearance when it was still four miles away from touchdown, the civil aviation ministry said.
"The aircraft was following ILS Approach for landing on runway 24 and the pilot reported to ATC that it is established on ILS approach at about 10 miles from touch down. Landing clearance was given at about four miles from touchdown," said a statement from the ministry.
An ILS, or instrument landing system, is a ground-based instrument approach system that provides precision guidance to an aircraft approaching and landing on a runway.
"Aircraft touched down on the runway 24 slightly beyond the touch down zone, overshot the runway and went in the valley beyond the runway," it added.
At least 158 people were killed in the crash.
Runway 24`s length is approximately is 2,450 metres (8,000 feet) and an end safety area of 90 metres.
"This runway was commissioned in 2006 and remained operational since then. ILS was operating normal. No problem was reported by pilot," said the statement.
The airport at Bajpe, about 30 km from Mangalore, is in a hilly area and considered one of the most difficult airports to take off and land. The area had been experiencing heavy rains for the last two days.
Details of the crashed aircraft and events preceding the crash, according to the ministry of civil aviation:
Time of crash: 6.05 am.
Flight: Air India Express Flight No. 812
Type : Boeing 737-800
Route : Dubai to Mangalore
Total Persons on Board : 166 (137 adults, 19 children, 4 infants and 6 crew)
Weather Conditions : visibility 6 km, calm wind and no rain reported at time of crash