Airlink plane makes an emergency landing

2011-11-11 09:22

An Airlink flight had to do emergency landing shortly after takeoff from the OR Tambo International Airport, the company said today.

Flight SA8739, with 72 passengers and four crew on board, was forced to ground on its belly yesterday night after experiencing problems with its nose-wheel, spokesperson Karin Murray said in a statement.

The aircraft landed safely at 9.20pm with its nose-wheel retracted, she said.

The aircraft left the airport at 7.10pm and was expected to land in Pietermaritzburg at 7.40pm.

“In accordance with procedure, the crew turned back to OR Tambo International and burned off fuel before landing. None of the passengers or crew were hurt in the emergency landing,” said Murray.

Chief executive Rodger Roster said the company would provide alternative travel arrangements for the passengers.

The SA Civil Aviation Authority had been informed, she said, adding that the company would provide any support needed by investigators.

Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele congratulated those who worked to ensure the safety of the emergency landing.

“We want to commend the captain and crew of the aircraft, Airports Company South Africa, Air Traffic and Navigation Services, emergency services (and others),” Ndebele said in a statement.

“This again demonstrates our readiness and preparedness as a country to effectively deal with such emergencies.”

With the approach of the COP-17 environmental conference in Durban later in the month, Ndebele said an integrated and coordinated approach to safety-related issues was a priority.

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