A plane flying from City of Derry Airport to Stansted had to change course and return to Eglinton after a burning smell was detected, it has been confirmed.
The incident, which involved the BMI Regional flight to London from Derry on Sunday, led to the plane returning to Eglinton within 10 minutes of take-off.
Donegal County Councillor Rena Donaghey, whose family members were on the flight, praised the airline and airport for their response to the situation. She told how passengers found out about the emergency “not long into the flight” when an announcement came over the tannoy, stating a burning smell had been detected.
Passengers were informed the plane would be making an emergency landing in two minutes, something Colr. Donaghey praised, as she said there was “no time for panic.”
All passengers were safely disembarked and either provided with taxis or offered hotel rooms as the flight could not be rescheduled that night.“The passengers were treated terribly well.” said Colr. Donaghey. “They were very, very well looked after. Thank God, it all ended well and safely.”
A spokesperson for BMI said they “can confirm that BM1507 from Derry to Stansted performed an airturnback on Sunday afternoon due to an electrical burning smell”, adding: “The aircraft arrived safely on the ground and following a thorough investigation the aircraft was declared safe.
“Flybmi always operates a ‘safety first’ policy and the turnback was simply a precaution to ensure the safely and well-being of all passengers and crew on-board.
“All passengers were rebooked on to alternative flights and hotel accommodation was provided where necessary.”