The passenger jet that caught fire upon crashing at Haneda airport had been granted permission to land, according to Japan Airlines.

In a recording from the control tower apparently taken before impact, a voice can be heard advising Japan Airlines’ flight to ‘proceed with approach’.

According to Japan Airlines executives, the passenger jet that collided with a coast guard plane in a catastrophic accident at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport had been granted permission to land.

Although all 379 passengers and crew managed to escape to safety down emergency slides minutes before the Japan Airlines Airbus caught fire, tragically, five people on the coast guard aircraft lost their lives.

The burned-out remains of the airliner, still resting on the tarmac on Wednesday, serve as a testament to just how close the plane came to disaster.

The captain of the coast guard plane, who was its lone survivor but suffered serious injuries, had been transporting aid to the New Year’s Day earthquake zone. Unfortunately, five passengers on the plane did not survive.

Footage captured on Tuesday displayed a ball of fire and thick black smoke erupting from underneath the airliner shortly after landing, when its front landing gear failed, causing it to come to a halt on its nose.

Video footage shared on the social media platform X showed passengers sliding down inflatable slides while flames shot out from the rear of the aircraft.

As the plane was being evacuated, numerous fire engines attempted to extinguish the flames, but it took eight hours to finally put out the blazing fire that eventually engulfed the entire plane.

“As soon as we landed, there was a ‘bang’. And I noticed a blaze rising from the right side,” said a female passenger on board while speaking to broadcaster NHK.

She continued, “It was getting hot inside the plane, and I thought, to be honest, I would not survive.”

Another woman, accompanied by a small child, shared her experience with NHK, saying, “I thought we landed normally. But then I realized I was smelling smoke. I looked outside and it was already burning.”

“I needed to protect my daughter. That was the only thing on my mind.”

Government officials have vowed to investigate how this incident occurred in a country that had not witnessed a serious commercial aviation accident for many years.

When questioned at a late-night briefing on Tuesday about whether the Japan Airlines flight had been granted landing permission by air traffic control, officials at the airline stated, “Our understanding is that it was granted.”

However, both Japan Airlines and the land ministry declined to comment directly on the communication between flight controllers and the two planes, citing the ongoing investigation.

A recording from Haneda’s control tower, apparently captured moments before the collision and available on a live air traffic signals broadcasting site, features a voice advising Japan Airlines’ flight to “proceed with approach”.

While some domestic flights operated from Haneda on Wednesday morning, dozens were canceled at one of the busiest airports in the world.

A team of specialists from France’s Airbus, the manufacturer of the Japan Airlines plane, has committed to assisting Japanese authorities in their investigation. Investigators from Britain, where the aircraft’s two Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines were manufactured, are also expected to join.

The passenger plane had arrived from New Chitose Airport, serving Sapporo on the northern island of Hokkaido. Among those on board were eight children.

The coast guard plane had been preparing to fly to Ishikawa prefecture to deliver supplies following the devastating New Year’s Day earthquake, which claimed the lives of at least 62 people.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida expressed his admiration for the deceased crew members who were on their way to help the victims of the quake, stating, “These were employees who had a strong sense of duty and responsibility towards the affected areas.”

In 1985, a JAL jumbo jet flying from Tokyo to Osaka crashed in the central Gunma region, resulting in the deaths of 520 passengers and crew in one of the world’s deadliest single-flight plane crashes.

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