A rough landing at LaGuardia Airport where a landing gear on a Southwest plane collapsed when landing. There were a total of 150 people on board. (Courtesy: WABC)
NEW YORK (USA Today) -- A Southwest Airlines flight from Nashville landed safely Monday evening after its nose gear collapsed upon touchdown at New York's LaGuardia Airport, authorities said.
There were conflicting reports on the number and extent of injuries when Flight 345, a Boeing 737-700 made in 1999, landed at 5:40 p.m. ET.
Southwest said in a statement that five passengers and three flight attendants had reported injuries, which were not specified.
At a news briefing about 8:30 p.m., the Port Authority, which operates the airport, said 10 people were treated at the scene and six were hospitalized.
WABC-TV reported that six people complaining of back and neck pain were transported to hospitals and that four others suffered anxiety attacks.
Citing the Port Authority, WNBC-TV said earlier that two passengers suffered minor bumps and bruises, and four others had anxiety attacks.
All passengers were evacuated on emergency chutes.
Southwest said the plane carried a total of 150 passengers and crew, but it did not provide a breakdown. WABC said there were 145 passengers and five crewmembers.
As the jet approached the runway, the front landing gear appeared "out of shape, like it wasn't supposed to land that way," Melina Andujar told WNBC. She added that the front wheel "didn't come out, and it landed on its nose and it started skidding," sending up sparks.
Richard Strauss, president of Strauss Media Strategies, who was on another flight, told CBS New York: "That nose gear is completely off the plane and the nose is sitting on the ground."
Passengers aboard the plane and on other flights posted photos.
The FAA said the airport remains open but flights headed to LaGuardia would be held at their origins until at least 9 p.m.
A Port Authority spokesperson told ABC that passengers should be prepared for "major delays" because one of the two runways would remain closed indefinitely.
Flight 345 had been scheduled to fly on to Denver after New York but was canceled.
By Michael Winter, USA TODAY