Packed easyJet plane makes emergency landing in Portugal after pilot falls ill during flight from London to Morocco
- The flight diverted to Faro, Portugal, after taking off from London Gatwick today
- Pilot landed because he was suffering an ‘indisposition’, airport source claims
A packed easyJet plane has reportedly had to make an emergency landing on the Algarve after the pilot fell ill.
The co-pilot is said to have landed the aircraft with 100 people on board.
It diverted to Faro in Portugal after taking off from London Gatwick just after 6.30am this morning bound for Agadir in Morocco. It was due to arrive at 9.25am local time.
Online flight trackers are showing the Airbus A320’s unscheduled stop following the mid-air alert.
Leading Portuguese daily Correio da Manha is reporting a Faro airport source has told it the diversion is the result of the pilot suffering an ‘indisposition’.
It diverted to Faro in Portugal after taking off from London Gatwick just after 6.30am this morning bound for Agadir in Morocco. File photo of EasyJet flight 2021
It said a red alert had been activated and the co-pilot successfully landed the plane. EasyJet has been approached for comment.
It is not yet clear what time the plane will now reach its destination and whether the pilot will continue on the flight or be taken to hospital.
An Aer Lingus passenger jet was forced to make an emergency landing earlier this month in Dublin just minutes after take-off after a flock of pigeons was sucked into the aircraft’s engine.
Firefighters immediately scrambled onto the runway once the aircraft had landed following the bird strike this afternoon.
Passengers reported experiencing major vibrations on the plane after the flock of birds got trapped in the right engine.
An Aer Lingus passenger jet was forced to make an emergency landing earlier this month in Dublin just minutes after take-off after a flock of pigeons was sucked into the aircraft’s engine (file image)
And in February this year two British Airways transatlantic flights were forced to make an emergency landing after passengers complained of smoke and a burning smell coming from seats in the business class section.
During the first incident, on February 1, attendants on BA216 from Washington Dulles airport to London had to spray a fire extinguisher on two seats when concerned passengers reported an acrid burning smell just minutes into the eight-hour flight to the UK.
The captain then declared an emergency to air traffic controllers and the plane landed in Halifax, Canada.
All the passengers disembarked the plane normally while fire crews carried out an inspection of the seating area.
Footage shared from passenger on the flight showed fire crews moving through the cabin.
On February 10 this year, another Boeing Dreamliner was involved in a smoke incident, also in the business class section.
Passengers on the flight from Boston to Heathrow had told flight attendants they could smell smoke coming from seat 12A.
The flight was over the Atlantic Ocean and 600 miles from the nearest airport when a decision was made to divert to St John’s, Newfoundland, Canada.
It landed almost two hours later with the 106 passengers and crew taken to the terminal while fire fighters carried out an inspection.