Korean Air, Cathay Pacific aircraft clip wings at Japan airport; no injuries

TOKYO/SEOUL (Reuters) – Two aircraft belonging to Korean Air Lines and Cathay Pacific Airways clipped wings at New Chitose Airport on Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido on Tuesday amid wintry conditions, a Korean Air official said.

No injuries were reported on either plane, Japanese media said.

The Korean Air flight had 289 passengers and crew members on board, an airline official said.

Japanese media reports had conflicting information on whether passengers were on board the Cathay Pacific aircraft. Cathay Pacific Airways could not immediately be reached for comment.

An airport spokesperson said the airport received a call about the incident shortly after 1730 local time (0830 GMT) on Tuesday. The Korean Air Lines flight 766 bound for Seoul and the Cathay Pacific Airways flight 583 heading to Hong Kong were next to each other at gates.

The incident happened when a towing car, which was pushing the Korean Air plane backwards ahead of departure, slipped due to snow on the ground, leading the airplane’s left wing to clip the Cathay Pacific plane’s right tail wing, the Korean Air official said.

More than 80 domestic and international flights departing and arriving New Chitose Airport have been cancelled due to bad weather on Tuesday, the airport spokesperson said.

(This story has been refiled to fix a typo in ‘aircraft’ in the headline)

(Reporting by Satoshi Sugiyama in Tokyo and Ju-min Park in Seoul; Editing by Andrew Heavens, Bernadette Baum and Ros Russell)