Virgin Atlantic Flight Makes Emergency Landing
A Virgin Atlantic 747 destined for Las Vegas from England was quickly rerouted and sent for an emergency landing at Gatwick Airport after only four hours due to a faulty landing gear. With the wheels being unable to full descend, the pilot had to attempt “a nonstandard landing procedure,” according to a statement from the airline.
The crew on-board managed to keep the customers calm during this event, though it was clear that they were in a dangerous situation.
“They said it was an emergency landing and we had to brace on impact,” Dan Crane, a passenger on the 747 said.
The situation was tense and anxious. Some people were crying, but passengers praised the flight crew and pilots for the way they handled the incident by keeping everyone updated yet calm.
“Everybody gave the crew a big round of applause when we landed,” passenger Mike Kaufman told Sky News. “I can’t wait to get into the terminal and have a gin and tonic now.”
This is only the latest problem for the Virgin Group. In late October of this year, Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo crashed during a test, causing the loss of both the craft and the life of one of the pilots.
After today’s emergency landing, Virgin CEO Craig Kreeger personally went to Gatwick to speak to the crew and passengers, and Virgin Group founder Richard Branson tweeted his admiration, thanks and support.
Virgin Atlantic can confirm that flight VS43 has landed safely back at Gatwick. Our priority now is to look after our passengers and crew.
— Virgin Atlantic (@VirginAtlantic) December 29, 2014
Virgin Atlantic can confirm that flight VS43 has landed safely back at Gatwick. Our priority now is to look after our passengers and crew. — Virgin Atlantic (@VirginAtlantic) December 29, 2014
— Richard Branson (@richardbranson) December 29, 2014
Meanwhile, passengers are scheduled for a new flight to Vegas tomorrow. Their hotel stay and food are being comped by the airline.