Airliner makes emergency landing in Melbourne

2014-01-10 10:25

Melbourne — An Air New Zealand airliner made an emergency landing at Melbourne Airport with an engine fault on Thursday after passengers heard a loud noise following take off.

The Airbus A320 airliner carrying 145 passengers and six crew to the New Zealand city of Auckland returned to Australia's second largest city without incident "after experiencing an engine fault," the airline said in a statement on Friday.

There were Twitter reports that the twin-engine jet had suffered a right-hand engine failure with fuel leak.

Air New Zealand said engineers were still investigating the fault, but reports that it this was caused by a fuel leak were incorrect.

Passenger Albert Fitisemanu said the in-flight entertainment was shut down 15 minutes into the flight, then he heard a loud, repetitive noise.

"It almost sounded like there was a dog barking. That's a loud dog," he told Australian Broadcasting Corp.

Passenger Tobias Haque said his fellow passengers were not told what was happening.

"We were waiting for an announcement, waiting for someone to get on the little buzzer, and tell us what was going on, but it just didn't happen," Haque told ABC.

The airline said passengers had been accommodated in hotels overnight and would continue to Auckland on alternative flights on Friday.

Melbourne Airport said in a statement Flight NZ726 had landed without incident and there were no reports of passenger injuries.

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