Fire on a Boeing 767 forces evacuation, sends five to hospital

MONTREAL – Seven people arriving on a Boeing 767 operated by Royal Air Maroc were treated for smoke inhalation Monday evening – after a fire on a baggage belt adjacent to an open cargo door in the aircraft’s belly triggered a full-scale emergency evacuation of 250 passengers and eight crew.

The incident took place on the tarmac at Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport in Dorval, airport public-relations spokesperson François Asselin said, with the fire reported at 4:47 p.m.

Three people suffered lower-body injuries “consistent of the type sustained in a sliding fall,” after they used the plane’s emergency exit slides, Marc-André Gagnon, operations chief at Urgences-Santé, said.

Five of the injured, all women, were treated on the scene and were then taken to a hospital, he said.

The other two injured, both men, refused to be hospitalized.

Asselin said the aircraft, operating as Flight 206 on a direct flight from Casablanca, Morocco, had touched down about 4:30 p.m.

“I can confirm there was smoke. I can’t confirm whether there was smoke inside the aircraft,” Asselin said.

The evacuation, he suggested, was “more of a precautionary measure.”

Asselin, who has spent about 15 years in the aviation business, said that “this is the first time I can recall such an incident at Montreal-Trudeau,” with emergency-slide deployment.

No dollar estimate of the monetary damages was immediately available.

The plane remains out of service, pending the arrival of investigators “first thing in the morning” from the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, Asselin said.


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