Patna: Passengers of a New Delhi-bound Air India flight had a scare on Thursday when the aircraft experienced severe technical problems within 15 minutes of taking off from the Jayaprakash Narayan International Airport, forcing it to return.
A total of 122 people were onboard Flight 410.
A bird-hit is being suspected behind the fault, though no trace or body of any bird has been found so far. A team of engineers from Air India was expected to reach Patna later on Thursday night and open the plane’s engines to investigate the cause of the snag.
Patna airport director Rajender Singh Lahauria told The Telegraph: “There was no emergency or priority landing of the aircraft. It was a normal landing, though we had arranged for all priority landing protocol on our own as the pilot had requested to return to the airport due to technical reasons.”
Lahauria said the incident occurred around 2.45pm. The flight had a delayed departure and had ventured around 15 nautical miles on the Delhi route when the pilot sought permission to return owing to technical reasons.
“We asked him about the technical reasons, but he did not elaborate and told us that an engine was vibrating. We asked him whether he wanted priority landing, but he opted for normal landing. All passengers were safely alighted,” Lahauria added.
The entire take-off and landing back at the airport happened in 15 minutes. However, the incident had a cascading effect and several flights belonging to other airlines were delayed.
Another airport official said that most of the Air India passengers travelling in the snag-hit plane were accommodated on other flights, while some chose to opt out from travelling.
One of the passengers of Flight 410 who identified himself as Haroon, said that “it felt as if the aircraft was unable to climb and its body was shuddering and vibrating. We were all worried”.
Patna airport has of late become prone to bird hits with two flights suffering on June 16.
Courtesy: The Telegraph