A plane that had just landed in Toronto was evacuated after it was struck by an empty aircraft pushing back from a gate, the airline said. WestJet airlines said its Boeing 737-800 carrying 168 passengers and six crew was waiting for a gate when it was hit by a Sunwing plane.
Video showed a fire near the Sunwing plane’s tail and WestJet passengers sliding down emergency chutes. All passengers were evacuated and safe, WestJet said.
The plane had landed at Toronto Pearson from the resort of Cancun in Mexico and was stationary when the collision took place, the airline said. WestJet said on Twitter: “Due to the position of the aircraft on the laneway, WestJet guests required evacuation via emergency slide.”
Emergency crews responded immediately, the statement added. Pearson Airport said on Twitter that fire and emergency crews had responded to an “incident involving two aircraft” at its Terminal 3, and that passengers had been evacuated.
Sunwing said its plane was being towed by its ground handling service provider at the time and there were no passengers or crew on board. The evacuation took place as temperatures in the city dropped to -21 C.
Eyewitnesses posted pictures of the incident on social media.