Netherlands: Plane’s engine catches fire, dropping debris that injures two people in a Dutch town

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Pieces of metal fell on the town of Meerssen after a Boeing 747 cargo plane experienced an engine fire shortly after taking off from Maastricht, according to the Veiligheidsregio (the Dutch regional safety inspector) and Maastricht Aachen Airport (MAA). The plane was bound for New York.
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“The plane took off from Maastricht Aachen Airport and had engine problems. As a result, metal parts fell down in Meerssen in the Sint Josephstraat area,” the safety inspector said.

Two people were slightly injured. One of them was taken to a hospital, the safety inspector said. Several cars and houses were also damaged, the safety inspector added.

MAA said in a statement that the plane was carrying “general cargo and pharmaceuticals on board.”

“A few seconds after the plane took off, air traffic control noted an engine fire and informed the pilots. They then switched off the engine concerned and sent out an emergency signal,” MAA said.

The plan landed at nearby Liège airport. MAA said the pilot chose to land at Liège due to its longer runway, which provided the plane with more space to land safely.

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“We understand that people are shocked and regret that this has happened,” MAA said. “Our attention now primarily focuses on those directly involved in this incident.”

CNN has contacted Boeing for comment.

News of the cargo flight’s emergency landing comes on the heels of a similar incident in the US on Saturday.

A United Airlines flight was forced to return to Denver International Airport after it suffered an engine failure shortly after takeoff, sending aircraft debris raining down on a suburb. The Boeing 777-200 safely returned to the Denver International Airport and no one was injured.

Boeing said in a statement to CNN Saturday night that company technical advisers are supporting the NTSB with its investigation into that flight.

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