Super jumbo makes emergency landing at Hyderabad airport

October 23rd, 2011 - 7:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Hyderabad, Oct 23 (IANS) The world’s largest airplane, the Airbus A-380, made an emergency landing at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA) near here in the early hours of Sunday due to a technical snag.

The Emirates Airlines EK385 flight, with 481 passengers on board, was on its way from Bangkok to Dubai, an airport official said.

This was the third time in three years that RGIA successfully handled an A-380, the official said.

“The aircraft landed with 481 passengers safely at 3.40 a.m.,” an airport spokesman told IANS.

The pilot cited a technical snag as the reason for making the emergency landing at the airport in Shamshabad, around 20 km from Hyderabad.

“At RGIA, the Airport Rescue Fire Fighters (ARFF) immediately upgraded themselves from CAT-9 to CAT-10 category to ensure safe landing of the aircraft,” said a statement from RGIA.

“The timely and well-coordinated action taken by GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd. staff along with its stakeholders ensures the readiness of the airport in times of such emergencies including its capability in handling A-380 aircraft,” it added.

The aircraft reportedly approached the Chennai airport but did not get clearance for landing as the runway was busy. The pilot then contacted Air Traffic Control at Shamshabad and got the clearance to land.

The Emirates accommodated the passengers on its Hyderabad-Dubai flights, including a special flight.

Out of 481 passengers, 80 left for Dubai by a regular Emirates flight EK527 Hyderabad-Dubai at 10.20 a.m.

Some passengers were sent by a special flight at 11.20 a.m. and the remaining by the regular Hyderabad-Dubai flight in the evening.

Airbus engineers from the company’s headquarters in Toulouse, France, are flying to Hyderabad to attend to the technical snag.

This is the third time in three years that A-380 landed at RGIA.

During the civil aviation exhibition in October 2008, the aircraft had landed at Begumpet Airport, the old airport in the city.

The aircraft, with a seating capacity of 525, then landed at RGIA, marking the first landing of the super-jumbo at India’s first Code F compliant airport-equipped to receive larger aircraft.

In June this year, a commercial aircraft, EK-413 flying from Sydney to Dubai landed at RGIA for a medical emergency.

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