Qantas flight to Sydney returns to San Francisco Airport with engine trouble

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Qantas flight returns to SF with engine trouble

SAN FRANCISCO — A Qantas jet headed for Australia with 212 passengers and a crew of 18 returned safely to San Francisco Airport early Tuesday after engine vibration forced pilots to shut down an engine.

Flight 74 left San Francisco for Sydney at 11:05 p.m. PDT Monday and returned at 12:45 a.m. Tuesday, San Francisco airport duty manager Carol Spear said.

Around 11:50 a.m., the flight crew noticed vibration in engine No. 4, Qantas Airways spokesman Simon Rushton said by telephone from Sydney. The crew shut the engine down and sought priority clearance to return to San Francisco.

There were no injuries, Rushton said, and the plane was able to pull up to the jetway at the terminal so passengers could deplane.

Rushton said there was no fire, but an engine surge can often cause what appear to be flames.

“Engineers have determined the engine does need replacement, and they are checking to see what caused the problem,” he said.

Qantas put the passengers up in hotels for the night and planned to make arrangements for them to get to Sydney on Tuesday, Rushton said.

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