Australia: Qantas plane lands in Sydney after mid-flight alert

Europe 1 with AFP

Sydney Airport ambulances have been rushed to the arrival of a Qantas flight believed to be carrying more than 100 passengers from New Zealand, an airport spokeswoman said on Wednesday. Australian news channel Channel Nine said “engine failure” was blamed.

Ambulances were rushed to Sydney Airport on Wednesday after a Qantas plane arrived and sent an in-flight distress signal. Flight QF144 from Auckland, New Zealand, had more than 100 passengers on board, according to a spokeswoman for paramedics.

A probable problem with one of the motors

The plane, a Boeing 737-800, finally landed safely on a runway at Sydney Airport, according to footage from public broadcaster ABC. Earlier, New South Wales state paramedics were called in as part of an emergency plan, after the plane sent out a distress signal as it flew over the Tasman Sea, between Australia and New Zealand.

Several Australian media reported that the aircraft had encountered problems with one of its engines. The Boeing 737-800 model has two and can land safely with just one. According to the Australian government’s aviation regulator, a distress signal indicates that an “aircraft is in imminent grave danger and requires immediate assistance”.

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