At Chicago O’Hare, American 767 catches fire on runway

A runway at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago was closed Friday afternoon due to a disabled aircraft, the Federal Aviation Administration said in a tweet. Witnesses saw a plume of black smoke and a fireball on the right side of the aircraft, which had aborted takeoff.

The FAA said the American Airlines Boeing 767 blew a tire.

American spokeswoman Leslie Scott said the plane had an engine-related mechanical issue.

The 161 passengers and nine crew members on Flight 383 to Miami used emergency slides to exit the airliner, she said.

Josiah Ryan, senior producer for Social TV at CNN was aboard a flight landing at O’Hare. Shortly after their American Airlines flight landed, their captain told passengers over the loudspeaker, “We’re near our gate, but there has been an accident on one of the runways.”

Ryan said he saw emergency vehicles at a high rate of speed head out to one of the runway and also saw large plume of black smoke rising up into the sky.

Video tweeted by a witness on the ground showed an airliner with a large tower of smoke rising from the right side. The video showed one of the emergency slides being deployed. Other images showed heavy flames.

Three of the airport’s runways were closed at mid-afternoon Friday.

A helicopter for CNN affiliate WGN shot live video of a plane sitting in the middle of a runway with a darkened right wing. About half a dozen emergency vehicles surrounded the jet.

There were no immediate reports of injuries.

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