Hearing the number of passengers, he said, “800 people? Wow! ‘

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The world could not get over the shock of what happened at Kabul airport after the Taliban entered the Afghan capital. As hundreds of civilians panicked the night before for fear of being abandoned to the Taliban, that desperation led to one of the busiest flights in history.


A US military C-17 cargo plane using the designator RCH 871 performed the most congested flight in its history. The plane, which left Kabul with hundreds of passengers as civilians entered the runways the day before, landed at the US airbase in Qatar. Asked by an air traffic controller on the ground how many people were on board during the approach to Doha, the pilot replied “800” while the controller said “Wow! His astonishment was reflected in the annals.


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The official carrying capacity of these planes is 134 people. However, in similar emergencies this capacity has been exceeded. According to information published on the US Air Force website, during the heavy storm that hit the Philippines in 2013, an American C-17 plane took off with 670 passengers at a time. At that time, there were scenes similar to those today inside the cabin.


In contrast, a US defense official said that unlike the pilot of RCH 871, who claimed to be carrying 800 people, 640 Afghan civilians got off the plane in Qatar, and even though the capacity was exceeded, the crew was chosen to support them. the plane instead of leaving them behind. However, he did not provide information on the number of Americans on the plane, additional to the 640 Afghans. The official also noted that other flights have transported hundreds of people from Kabul in the past two days, some of whom may have transported more than 640 Afghans. In this situation, an image of confusion arises, which even the pilot of RCH 871 does not know how many people he is carrying, if an additional American group of 160 Afghan civilians is not on board.


Consulting an American expert who provides information on the subject, Hürriyet replied: “It seems the crew was in a frantic haste to leave, and they just looked at the cabin and made an approximation by eye. The expert we interviewed stressed that “it is very important that the pilots do not know the exact number of people in the cabin due to the turbulence on the ground”.

Aviation experts have indicated that in such emergency evacuations, passengers sit on the floor of the aircraft and use the cargo tie-downs they hold throughout the flight. theft as seat belts.

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INFORMATION NOTE: The C-17 aircraft with the call code RCH 871 is registered at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, United States. These planes have been in active service for almost 30 years.


Yesterday, gruesome images of the lifeless body of an Afghan suspended from the wheel of a moving US cargo plane on the runway were shared on social media. A US security official has confirmed that at least one person got stuck in the undercarriage of one of the C-17 planes that accidentally took off from Kabul. According to the official, the pilots were unable to position the landing gear correctly and had to make an emergency landing in a neighboring third country. During the examination carried out here, human remains were found stuck in the wheels.

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