Etihad jet in emergency landing after mayday call

'Airspeed system failure' causes Airbus A330 to turn back shortly after take-off

An Etihad Airways flight was forced to make an emergency landing in Brisbane on Thursday following a mayday call shortly after taking off from the Australian city.

The Airbus A330 was in a holding pattern near to the city when it made the distress call for an “airspeed system failure”, Australia’s transport safety bureau said.

The aircraft, which had the flight number EY473, was scheduled to fly to Singapore after a one-hour delay saw it take off at 13:10 but landed safely back in Brisbane at 14:50 local time.

“The flight crew followed all standard operational procedures, declared an emergency, and made a precautionary landing. The aircraft landed without incident and all passengers and crew are safe,” a statement from the Abu Dhabi carrier to Guardian Australia said.

“We will be working with the operator to obtain the relevant recorded information,” it added.

Passengers were later rebooked with other airlines, Etihad said.

Australia’s transport safety bureau has now launched an investigation into the incident.

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Posted by: Mick

I fly 2 times a month and I'm terrified every time I get on a plane. I would hate to end up being a statistic. Definitely not the way I would want to go.
I've flown Etihad ONE time only on a flight from Abu Dhabi to Toronto and we sat on the tarmac for almost two hours before they shifted us to another plane (electronics issue). I hate to say it but I dare say that Etihad is going to encounter trouble one of these days. I hope not but its scary.

Posted by: Monkey Tennis

Mick - no need to fear; both Etihad (5th) and Emirates (4th) were in the top 10 safest airlines according to JACDEC over the last 12 months. If you are, however, terrified of flying I recommend not going to their website!

Posted by: Left Hand Seat Selector

Good call by the skipper! After the Air France AB 330 from Brazil to France which disappeared over the mid -Atlantic and the causes were associated to the 'pitot tubes' (assist in air speed calculation) icing up, all operators need to be mindful of the dangers!

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