Emirates Boeing 777 Crashes and Burns in Dubai (Updated)

Jetliner was forced to make an emergency landing, but all passengers and crew were evacuated.

Emirates crash
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Update, 3:55pm: Video has surfaced of the passengers evacuating the aircraft; we've added it at the bottom of this post.

Update, 12:48pm: One firefigher has reportedly been killed while responding to the plane crash. We have updated the headline to reflect this.

On Wednesday, an Emirates Airline Boeing 777 caught fire and exploded after making an emergency landing at Dubai International Airport, but all 300 people on board were safely evacuated from the crippled jumbo jet before anyone was injured, according to the government of Dubai. The cause of the fire is not yet known.

Footage of the burning Boeing has spread rapidly across social media, with videos and images of the conflagration depicting a large column of black smoke rising into the sky as flames licked at the 777's fuselage.

Emirates Flight 521 was inbound from Trivandrum International Airport in India when the 777 was forced to make the impromptu landing, reportedly due to a problem with the plane's landing gear. Images of the wrecked Boeing appear to show its belly lying directly on the ground, suggesting the wheels may never have deployed. One video posted on Twitter appears to show the plane sliding across the ground without any landing gear.

The plane's 282 passengers and 18 crew members were all immediately evacuated from the plane, and emergency responders were quick to respond to the scene.

Dubai authorities have closed the airport in the aftermath of the incident, suspending all arrivals and departures and and rerouting planes currently en route to alternate landing fields. In a statement, Boeing declared it is monitoring the situation, and intends to work with Emirates to learn more about the crash.