Emergency landing after ‘smoke’ alarm scare in aircraft

A Flybe plane
A Flybe plane

For the second time in a fortnight emergency landing procedures have been called on at a Belfast airport.

Yesterday’s drama began when a cockpit alarm, on board a Flybe flight from Southampton to Belfast City, indicated smoke in the rear baggage hold.

Ambulances and fire engines were deployed when the pilot notified airport staff of the potential problem.

A spokeswoman for Flybe said the 69 passengers and four crew on board the Bombardier Q400 plane were able to disembark in the normal fashion and that “there was no sign of smoke when the aircraft had landed”.

She said: “The crew took the necessary action and the aircraft landed safely.

“Passengers evacuated the aircraft immediately by both front and rear stairs as normal and were bussed to the terminal.”

The spokeswoman added: “As is standard practice under such circumstances, the airport placed its emergency vehicles on standby.”

On December 16, a Flybe flight from Glasgow to Belfast City was diverted to Belfast International when flames were noticed coming from one of its two engines shortly after take-off.

On that occasion, the fire was extinguished using the plane’s own safety systems and it landed safely with the emergency services on stand-by.

Flybe have said both incidents are being fully investigated.

Last night the airline said: “The safety of its passengers and crew is the airline’s number one priority and Flybe regrets any inconvenience experienced.”

Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle has praised all those involved in the emergency for their quick actions.

Speaking last night, the East Belfast representative said: “It is with great relief that the incident which closed the City Airport earlier today has ended without any casualties.

“I want to praise the swift action taken by the authorities to ensure this incident was dealt with quickly and safely, minimising disruption during a busy few days.”

Flybe have said both incidents are being fully investigated.

Last night the airline said: “The safety of its passengers and crew is the airline’s number one priority and Flybe regrets any inconvenience experienced.”

Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle has praised all those involved in the emergency for their quick actions.

Speaking last night, the East Belfast representative said: “It is with great relief that the incident which closed the City Airport earlier today has ended without any casualties.

“I want to praise the swift action taken by the authorities to ensure this incident was dealt with quickly and safely, minimising disruption during a busy few days.”