A Boeing 737-800 passenger plane out of Ankara was attempting to land at the Trabzon Airport in northern Turkey when it overran the runway, leading to the plane clinging precariously to a muddy cliff face overlooking the Black Sea. Miraculously all of the 162 passengers and flight crew were safely evacuated and there were no injuries reported in the incident.

Turkish plane skids off the runway over the cliff

Pegasus Airline flight PC8622 was flying out of the Turkish capital, Ankara on Saturday to the Trabzon Airport in the north of Turkey when the incident happened.

The Boeing 737-800 is owned and operated by the low-cost Turkish airline, Pegasus Airlines. The flight had been uneventful up until then. However, according to Yucel Yavuz, the governor of Trabzon, it had been raining, causing the runway to be wet and slick. As the aircraft touched down, it had problems slowing down on the short runway and careened, out of control, towards the cliff’s edge.

The plane finally came to rest on the muddy cliff face, barely feet from the edge of the water. As can be seen from the videos which show the plane from all angles, one engine ended up in the water below the cliff.

CBS News reports that should the plane have stopped any further down the cliff side, it would likely have plunged into the water.

Yavuz continued by saying on Sunday that investigators are still trying to determine what caused the aircraft to leave the runway and that Trabzon Airport was to be closed until 8:00 a.m. on Sunday.

Passengers panicked and screamed as the plane plunged over the cliff

The BBC quotes one of the passengers, Fatma Gordu, who tells the Turkish news service Anadolu that the plane tilted to the side as the plane slid from the runway. Gordu said the front of the plane was down and there was panic on board the plane, with passengers shouting and screaming.

All passengers and crew were safely evacuated

Pegasus Airlines said in a statement, on their website, that they were sorry to report that a Boeing 737-800, registered to their airline, had been scheduled to land at 18:25 UTC on Saturday, and subsequently experienced an incident on the runway after touchdown. It was fortunate that all 162 passengers, along with the two pilots and four flight crew were safely evacuated from the aircraft with no injuries or loss of life reported. The airline added that Trabzon Airport was closed for a number of hours, but has since been reopened.