Virgin Atlantic Flight In UK Cancelled After Alert Passenger Spots Missing Bolts On Plane Wing

New-York Bound Flight Cancelled After Alert Passenger Spots Missing Bolts On Plane Wing

Passengers were flown to New York on different flights.

A Virgin Atlantic flight from Manchester to New York was cancelled just before take-off after a passenger raised concerns about missing bolts on one of the plane wings. According to the New York Post, a 41-year-old British traveler aboard Flight VS127 on January 15, spotted four missing fasteners during a safety briefing and promptly informed the cabin crew. After he raised an alarm, engineers were quickly notified, who conducted maintenance checks on the aircraft. 

”I’m a good flyer, but my partner was not loving the information I was telling her and starting to panic, and I was trying to put her mind at rest as much as I could. I thought it was best to mention it to a flight attendant to be on the safe side,” Phil Hardy told the Kennedy News agency.

A spokesperson with Virgin Atlantic told Fox Business the flight was ultimately canceled ”to provide time for precautionary additional engineering checks, which allowed our team the maximum time to complete their inspections.”

The team that conducted the inspections found the tops of four out of the 119 fasteners on the wing panel were missing, according to Virgin Atlantic. 

However, both Virgin Atlantic and Airbus, the airplane manufacturer, said that no passengers were at risk. Each of the wing panels on an Airbus A330 has 119 fasteners, so the fact that only four were missing did not impact ”the structural integrity or load capability of the wing, and the aircraft was safe to operate,” according to Airbus’s local chief wing Engineer. 

”The safety of our customers and crew is always our top priority and this was not compromised at any point. We always work well above industry safety standards and the aircraft is now back in service,” the Virgin Atlantic representative said.

Passengers were flown to New York on different flights.

The incident comes days after an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 9 MAX faced an emergency on January 6 after one of its doors blew open mid-air. The FAA has grounded 171 Boeing 737 Max 9 planes ”until operators complete enhanced inspections which include both left and right cabin door exit plugs, door components, and fasteners.”

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