Plane crash in Micronesia as Air Niugini flight overshoots runway

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A passenger plane ditched in a lagoon on Friday (Sep 28) after overshooting the runway on a remote Micronesian island, local media reported.

"So far, we don't know why they went down", Chuuk airport manager Jimmy Emilio told Pacific Daily News.

"The plane floated long enough for the 36 passengers and 11 crew members to escape and be rescued by locals in their boats".

Video published online by Radio New Zealand and pictures posted on Twitter showed the half-submerged aircraft surrounded by small speedboats.

The accident happened in the tiny Pacific island nation of Micronesia.

An Air Niugini passenger plane was sinking in the ocean on September 28 after the plane landed before reaching the air strip at Chuuk Airport in Micronesia.

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"No serious injuries. Only minor".

The lagoon where the plane landed was not believed to be far from land, and a number of small boats were now part of the rescue.

It wasn't immediately clear whether the Boeing 737-800 plane crashed in the lagoon, located near an airport, during its take-off or landing, the outlet reported. A cargo plane belonging to Air Niugini went off a runway at Madang Airport in 2013, but there were no casualties.

Papua New Guinea's Accident Investigation Commission said it was preparing to send investigators to the accident site.

The aircraft was enroute to Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea, the outlet reported.

"We're trying to arrange a team to go there but I can not give you any more information because I simply don't have it", a spokesman told AFP.