A Singapore Airlines plane was forced to return to Singapore after it caught fire at Changi Airport.
No injuries have been reported, but some travellers faced delays after Runway 2 was closed for five hours following the incident. Flight SQ368 with 222 passengers and 19 crew on board, departed Changi Airport Terminal 3 for Milan, Italy, at around 2.05am on Monday.
Three hours into the flight, the Boeing 777-300ER aircraft was forced to turn back to Singapore after the pilot received an engine oil warning message.
The Straits Times reports that 43 year old Ms Lee Bee Yee who was on board during the incident said that she smelled gasoline about two or three hours into the flight,
“We were informed by the pilot that there was a leak, and that the plane would have to return to Changi Airport as it did not have enough fuel for the journey.”
According to the Daily Mail, she wrote on Facebook “I just escaped death!!!!”.
Upon returning to Changi Airport, the aircraft’s right wing caught fire. “The blaze was quite fierce and we waited for around two to three minutes before the fire engines arrived,” Lee said, “surprisingly, all the passengers were quite calm. The SQ crew was very professional in calming everyone down.”
The fire was extinguished within five minutes according to a CAAS spokesman. Passengers were then transported to the terminal building by bus.
The Straits Times reports that the airline arranged for a new aircraft and crew to fly to Milan at 11am the same day.
CAAS are investigating the exact causes of the incident, whilst the Ministry of Transport’s Air Accident Investigation Bureau will also conduct an independent investigation.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien expressed his relief that no one was injured via Facebook.