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History of PIA - Pakistan International Airlines

Date: December 15, 1971


Type: Boeing 707-340C

Registration: AP-AVZ

C/n: 20487/847

Year built: 1970

Crew: 0 fatalities/5 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Total: 0 fatalities/5 on board

Location: Urumqi-Diwopu (China)

Phase: Landing

Nature: Freight

Flight: - Urumqi-Diwopu

Flight number:

Remarks: Crashed.

Probable cause:


Date: January 22, 1972


Type: Boeing 720-040B

Registration: AP-AMJ

C/n: 18380

Year Built: 1962

Crew: 0 fatalities/10 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/34 on board

Location: Ankara Airport (Turkey)

Phase: Landing

Nature: Scheduled passenger

Flight: Islamabad - Tehran - Ankara - Amsterdam

Flight number:

Remarks: The undercarriage of the Boeing 720B collapsed after hard landing and the aircraft veered off the runway. Visibility was poor in Ankara due to fog at the time of this accident. The aircraft was repaired and returned to service.

Probably cause: The aircraft made visual approach whilst airport was under Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) conditions.

Source: aerotransport.org

PIA Boeing 720-040B

Boeing 720-040B  (Copyright © Farouk Salehjee)

AP-AMJ with collapsed landing gear at Ankara Airport, Turkey

Date: December 8, 1972


Type: Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 600

Registration: AP-AUS

C/n: 10314

Year built: 1966

Total airframe hours: 11077 hours

Cycles: 16720 cycles

Crew: 5 fatalities/5 on board

Passengers: 26 fatalities/26 on board

Total: 31 fatalities/31 on board

Location: Maidan (Pakistan)

Phase: Cruise

Nature: Scheduled passenger

Flight: Gilgit - Rawalpindi

Flight number: PK-631

Remarks: The F27 departed from Gilgit Airport at 11:40 AM for flight to Rawalpindi. The aircraft crashed into a snow covered mountain 9,000 feet high above village Maidan around 8 miles south of Jalkot.

Source: Willem Wendt

PIA Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 200

Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 200  (Abbas Ali Collection)

Pakistan Army soldiers recovering dead bodies from snow covered mountain where AP-AUS crashed


Date: May 28, 1973


Type: Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 200

Registration: AP-AUW

C/n: 10331

Year built: 1967

Total airframe hours: 12767 hours

Cycles: 16500 cycles

Crew: 0 fatalities/6 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/36 on board

Total: 0 fatalities/42 on board

Location: Lyallpur (Pakistan)

Phase: Final approach

Nature: Scheduled passenger

Flight: Karachi - Multan - Lyallpur - Lahore

Flight number:

Remarks: Crashed after striking trees 800m short of runway.

Source: Willem Wendt

PIA Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 200

Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 200  (Abbas Ali Collection)

AP-AUW tail section at crash site


Date: July 5, 1975


Type: Boeing 707-373C

Registration: AP-AWV

C/n: 19441

Year built: 1966

Crew: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Total: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Location: Islamabad Airport (Pakistan)

Phase: Ground

Remarks: An explosive device exploded in cabin of the aircraft when it was parked on a servicing bay at night at Islamabad Airport. The Boeing 707 had arrived in Islamabad as flight PK-308 from Karachi and was scheduled to perform flight PK-309 to Karachi. Luckily there were no passengers or crew on board the aircraft at the time of explosion and no one was injured. The explosion made two holes, one in cabin floor and the other one on the fuselage side. The explosion did not cause in any critical damage to aircraft structure. The initial repair work on the aircraft was done at Islamabad and later it was ferried to Karachi Airport where the aircraft was fully repaired at airline's engineering and maintenance base. The repair work was done in consultation with aircraft maker Boeing Company. The Boeing 707 returned to active service after completion of repair work.


Date: December 16, 1978

Time: 8:10 AM

Type: Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 200

Registration: AP-ATO

C/n: 10250

Year built: 1964

Total airframe hours: 30260 hours

Cycles: 38666 cycles

Crew: 1 fatalities/2 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Total: 1 fatalities/2 on board

Location: Karachi (Pakistan)

Phase: Final approach

Nature: Test flight

Flight: Karachi - Karachi

Remarks: The aircraft took off from Karachi Airport at 7:35 AM for a test flight. Both engines lost power immediately following power increase during a stall recovery. The aircraft crashed near Central Ordnance Depot (COD) area, Karachi, around 8:10 AM. The F27 was engaged in a series of stall tests.

Probable cause: "Overheating of both engines, resulting in their simultaneous failure. This was caused by malfunction of the contact switches of no.1 engine propeller automatic safety pitch lock withdrawal system and pilot's failure to withdraw the locks manually by placing the HP fuel cock levers into the 'lockout' position".

Source: Willem Wendt


Date: November 26, 1979

Time: 2:04 AM

Type: Boeing 707-340C

Registration: AP-AWZ

C/n: 20275/844

Year built: 1970

Total airframe hours: 30170 hours

Crew: 11 fatalities/11 on board

Passengers: 145 fatalities/145 on board

Total: 156 fatalities/156 on board

Location: 125km north-east of Jeddah (Saudi Arabia)

Phase: Climb

Nature: Scheduled passenger

Flight: Kano - Jeddah - Karachi

Flight number: PK-740

Remarks: Flight PK-740 departed Jeddah at 1:29 AM for a flight to Karachi. The aircraft was climbing to FL370 when, at 1:47 AM, a stewardess reported a fire near the aft cabin passenger door. The crew started a descent from FL300 and were cleared to descend to 4000ft. Following a mayday call at 2:03 AM nothing more was heard from the flight. The aircraft crashed in a level rocky area at an elevation of 3000ft and burst into flames. The aircraft wreckage was found scattered over three-mile radius in rough rocky mountainous desert about 24km north of Taif.

Probable cause: "An in-flight fire in the cabin area which, through its intensity and rapid extension, resulted in panic among the passengers and smoke in the cockpit, eventually incapacitating the flight crew. The cause of the cabin fire was not determined". It was considered that the origin of the cabin fire could have been a leaking gasoline or kerosene stove, carried aboard by Hajj pilgrim passengers. Pressure differential could have caused a poorly sealed gasket to leak fuel. A second possibility is an electrical fire, but the rapid extension of the fire was considered difficult to explain because of the electrical circuit protection devices of the Boeing 707. Sabotage was considered as another possibility, but no evidence of use of an incendiary device was found.

PIA Boeing 707-340C

Boeing 707-340C  (Abbas Ali Collection)

AP-AWZ fuselage skin piece with alphabets from "Pakistan International" titles visible at the crash site


Date: January 8, 1981

Time: 11:51 AM

Type: Boeing 720-047B

Registration: AP-BAF

C/n: 18589/338

Year built: 1963

Crew: 0 fatalities/12 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/60 on board

Total: 0 fatalities/72 on board

Location: Karachi International Airport (Pakistan)

Phase: Landing

Nature: Scheduled passenger

Flight: Karachi - Quetta - Lahore

Flight number: PK-320

Remarks: The nose landing gear of PIA Boeing 720B failed to extend for landing at Quetta Airport and the captain elected to return to land at Karachi Airport. The aircraft made safe nose gear-up landing at Karachi Airport at 11:51 AM. The aircraft nose is reported to have been in contact with the runway for the last 500ft of the landing run. The runway was re-opened for flights operation at 6:30 PM after removal of the aircraft.

Source: Flight International


Date: February 2, 1981

Time: 8:36 PM

Type: McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30

Registration: AP-AXE

C/n: 46935/172

Year built: 1974

Crew: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Total: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Location: Karachi International Airport (Pakistan)

Phase: Ground

Remarks: Fire erupted in aircraft cabin around 8:36 PM when it was parked inside a hangar for maintenance work. Many of aircraft maintenance workers were on meal break at that time. The aircraft was burned-out and destroyed by fire. Presence of the aircraft in hangar made situation difficult for fire fighting vehicles. The fire took one hour to get under control.

Probable cause: Electrical short circuit in aircraft cabin.

PIA McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30

McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30  (Abbas Ali Collection)

Burned-out AP-AXE at Karachi Airport


Date: June 5, 1981


Type: Fokker F27 Friendship Mark 600

Registration: AP-AXF

C/n: 10354

Year built: 1968

Total airframe hours: 25451 hours

Cycles: 33931 cycles

Crew: 0 fatalities/3 on board

Passengers: 0 fatalities/0 on board

Total: 0 fatalities/3 on board

Location: Gilgit (Pakistan)

Phase: Take-off

Nature: Training

Flight: Gilgit - Gilgit

Remarks: The F27 overran runway after aborting take-off at 90kts (V1=96kts) during a touch-and-go.

Source: Willem Wendt


Main source for this page: Aviation Safety Network

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