News18 Evening Digest: Kerala Plane Crash Investigation and Other Top Stories

Officials inspect the wreckage of an Air India Express jet at Calicut International Airport in Karipur, Kerala, on August 8, 2020. (Arunchandra Bose/AFP)

Officials inspect the wreckage of an Air India Express jet at Calicut International Airport in Karipur, Kerala, on August 8, 2020. (Arunchandra Bose/AFP)

These are the top stories we are covering this evening: sources say runway friction at Kerala airport was not tested before Air India flight crash-landed in heavy rain; Union minister says pilot saved lives by turning off the engine but DGCA says it will examine the judgement call of landing; a pending fine saved a Kerala expat from the ill-fated flight; Abhishek Bachchan recovers from Covid-19; and Amazon announced Freedom Sale from August 8 to 11.

Runway Friction at Kerala Airport Was Not Tested Before Air India Flight Crash-Landed in Heavy Rain, Say Sources

Runway friction testing was not done at the Karipur airport near Kozhikode on Friday where an Air India Express passenger plane crash-landed on Friday evening, killing at least 18 people. Sources told News18 that a friction testing vehicle was brought from Chennai, however, it could not be used before the accident. A friction testing vehicle measures friction on airports runways, taxiways and highways. The system runs through a measuring wheel, which is mechanically geared to one of the rear main wheels of a base car. READ MORE

Union Minister Says Pilot Saved Lives in Kerala Crash Even as DGCA Examines 'Judgment Call' of Landing

The death toll from the crash of an Air India Express plane that overshot the runway in heavy rain near Kozhikode could have been higher had the pilot not switched off the engine in time, union minister V Muraleedharan, who visited the accident site on Saturday, said. The minister’s assertion of the pilot saving lives comes even as DGCA chief Arun Kumar said it is too early to tell at this point whether the accident was a result of a technical error or human error. READ MORE

How a Pending Fine at Dubai Airport Saved Kerala Expatriate from Boarding Ill-fated Air India Flight

T Noufal was told at the Dubai airport on Friday afternoon that he wouldn’t be able to board the Kozhikode-bound Air India Express as he had a fine pending. Noufal was dejected then but a few hours later, he was thanking his lucky stars as the aircraft crashed during landing, killing 18 people. And in another stroke of good luck, Noufal received a call from his Arab sponsor and later his company, saying he was being given his job back. READ MORE

Actor Abhishek Bachchan Recovers from Covid-19, Tests Negative

Abhishek Bachchan has tested negative for COVID-19. Sharing the news on Twitter, the actor expressed gratitude for the doctors treating him at the hospital. He also thanked his fans for their prayers. He first tested positive on July 11 following which he was admitted at the Nanavati hospital in Mumbai. READ MORE

Amazon Freedom Sale Follows Prime Day, Scheduled From August 8 to 11

Amazon India wrapped up its two-day Prime Day sale just yesterday. The e-commerce giant has now quickly announced yet another sale as a follow up, scheduled from August 8 to 11. The ‘Freedom Sale’ is expected to offer deals across categories including smartphones, consumer electronics, large appliances, TVs. Notably, Flipkart had announced its Big Saving Days sale which is currently still on and will continue till August 10. READ MORE

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