A ‘burning’ man has fallen out of a plane after a mid-air explosion in Somalia.
The Daallo Airlines plane was forced to make an emergency landing back at Mogadishu International Airport after the explosion, which experts believe was a bomb.
The explosion took place shortly after takeoff as the plane, en route to Djibouti, was ascending to 30,000 feet.
The plane made a safe landing after the incident and 74 passengers and crew were evacuated.
However, it is believed a man fell from the plane through a hole caused by the explosion.
According to the Guardian, Mohamed Hassan, a police officer in nearby Balad town, said residents had found the charred remains of an old man that fell from the plane.
According to the NY Post, pilot, Vladimir Vodopivec, said: “I think it was a bomb. Luckily, the flight controls were not damaged so I could return and land at the airport. We lost pressure in the cabin. Thank God it ended well.”
Passengers said they heard a bang before flames created a gaping hole in the plane’s side.
According to the Daily Telegraph, Awale Kullane, Somalia’s deputy ambassador to the UN was on board the flight. He wrote on Facebook that he “heard a loud noise and couldn’t see anything but smoke for a few seconds.” When visibility returned they realised “quite a chunk” of the plane was missing.
Aviation safety expert, John Goglia, said: “We don’t know a lot, but certainly it looks like a device.”
He added that there are only two things that could have caused a hole in the jet that looks like the one in photos — a bomb or a pressurisation blowout caused by a flaw in the plane’s skin.
It is believed the incident occurred during the takeoff phase of flight before the plane reached 30,000 feet, where there is maximum pressurisation. That makes the idea of a pressurisation blowout even less likely.