OSAKA: A part weighing around four kilogrammes fell off a plane that was taking off from Kansai airport and hit a car driving on a road in Osaka, according to the Transport Ministry.
No one was injured in the incident. The ministry will send safety inspectors to look into the cause of the mishap, judging that it could have triggered a serious accident, officials said.
A panel fell from a KLM Royal Dutch Airlines plane that took off at 10.40am (8.40am Thailand time) on Saturday for Amsterdam, according to the Osaka bureau of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.
The panel struck the car on a road in the central part of Osaka where there are a number of shops and apartment buildings. It smashed the window of the vehicle, in which there were two female occupants. One of them called the police, the bureau and other sources said.
KLM found that the panel was missing after the plane arrived in Amsterdam the same day.
According to the ministry, the plane was a Boeing 777 and 321 passengers and crew were aboard. The panel is believed to have fallen off while the aircraft was flying at an altitude of 2,400 metres or higher.
The panel, 0.6 metre long and 1 metre wide, is made of nonmetal compound materials and belongs to the base of the right wing. No abnormalities were reported about the plane in checkups before departure.