British Airways flight makes emergency landing at Heathrow 32 minutes after taking off

Qin Xie
·2-min read
The BA flight returned to Heathrow shortly after takeoff (FlightAware)
The BA flight returned to Heathrow shortly after takeoff (FlightAware)

A British Airways flight to Verona made an emergency landing at Heathrow this morning shortly after take off.

Flight BA2596, flying on an Airbus A320, departed the London airport just before 7am this morning according to flight tracking website Flightaware.

Instead of making the two hour journey to northern Italy, it made a loop over the city before returning to land just 32 minutes later, where it was met by a brigade of fire engines.

Sharing footage of the incident online, a passenger on board said that “There was a smell of burning and some crew felt unwell”.

In the video, the plane was seen trailed by four fire engines as well as several other emergency services vehicles.

A spokesperson for the airline confirmed to The Independent that the emergency landing was due to a “minor technical issue” but did not specify the problem.

All passengers have since boarded a replacement flight, which departed at 9.39am.

In a statement, the airline said: “The safety of our customers and crew is always our priority and the flight returned to Heathrow as a precaution due to a minor technical issue.

“We've apologised to our customers and have organised a replacement aircraft so that we can get them on their way again as quickly as possible.”

It’s not the first time a BA flight has made an emergency landing due to a technical issue.

Last year, two BA flights made similar landings in one day – one to Rome and one from Mumbai.

Flight BA548 took off normally from Heathrow shortly before 9am for the 900-mile flight to Rome’s Fiumicino airport.

But after less than 20 minutes, shortly after the Airbus A321 had crossed the Channel coast at Dungeness, the crew “squawked 7700” – the international code indicating an emergency to air-traffic controllers.

The aircraft circled over the English Channel then returned to Heathrow, being given priority clearance to land at British Airways’ main base.

On the same day, BA flight 134 declared an emergency 35 minutes after taking off for London Heathrow and was forced to return to Mumbai.It landed safely at 2.10pm, with fire engines waiting on standby, according to Mumbai Airport spokesperson.

Both incidents were due to technical issues.

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