Fire on JAL plane in Haneda collision spread from around left engine

NHK has learned the fire that engulfed a passenger jet that collided with a coast guard plane at Tokyo's Haneda Airport exactly one month ago started from around the airliner's left engine.

Both aircraft caught fire after the Japan Airlines jet collided with the Japan Coast Guard plane upon landing on a runway on January 2.

Firefighters deployed to the scene say they found that fire was spreading from around the left engine of the JAL plane.

They say all three fire trucks mobilized for the plane continued to spray water on its left wing in the initial stages of their work to extinguish the blaze. But the fire gutted the plane's entire fuselage.

It also came to light that five minutes after the collision, firefighters told passengers who evacuated from the plane to move away from the burning fuselage as they had remained near it.

The Japan Transport Safety Board is looking into how the fire started and destroyed the airliner as well as how all 379 people on board the plane managed to evacuate.

Fifteen passengers required medical treatment due to the accident. Five of the six crew aboard the coast guard plane died.