A plane heading towards Scatsta with 41 people on board was forced to turn back to Aberdeen on Wednesday when a crack appeared in the plane’s windscreen.
An emergency was declared and police, fire and ambulance crews were put on standby at Aberdeen Airport after the pilot of the aircraft – operated by Eastern Airways – noticed the damaged glass around 15 minutes into the flight. The 38 passengers and three crew had boarded the plane shortly before 9am.
An Eastern Airways spokesman said: “Shortly after departure from Aberdeen, the captain reported a small crack in one of the windscreen’s multi-layered toughened glass [panels].
“As a precaution he decided to return to Aberdeen to have the aircraft’s windscreen inspected by our engineers. The Saab 2000 aircraft with 38 passengers and three crew was flying to Scatsta as part of a charter flight and landed safely [back at Aberdeen] at 9.34am. On arrival in Aberdeen, all the passengers transferred to a different aircraft and departed at 9.50am, landing in Scatsta at 10.50am.
“We apologise to passengers for any inconvenience caused, but we will always err on the side of caution as safety is our primary concern.”
The spokesman stressed the return was purely precautionary and the passengers had not been in danger. He said yesterday that the affected windscreen panel has already been repaired and the plane is back in service.
A spokesman for Grampian Fire and Rescue Service confirmed crews had remained on standby until the plane landed safely at Aberdeen. They were later stood down.