• Tuesday, May 28, 2024
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Two passenger planes collide at Heathrow Airport

Planes collide at Heathrow

A Virgin Atlantic plane crashed into a British Airways jet at Heathrow Airport, sparking a huge emergency service response on Saturday.
The empty Virgin 787 plane was being towed at Terminal 3 when it clipped the wing of the BA Airbus A350 passenger plane, witnesses have said.

It has been reported that the plane was full of passengers and was bound for Accra but British Airways is yet to confirm.

At least five fire engines rushed to the scene while the Air Accident Investigation Branch has taken note.

Both planes were going at a low speed and there have not been any reports of injuries.
A Virgin spokesman said: “We are aware that the wingtip of one of our empty aircraft came into contact with another aircraft whilst being towed from the stand at London Heathrow Terminal 3.

“The safety of our customers and crew is always our top priority. We can confirm no customers were on board the Virgin Atlantic aircraft during this time.

“We’ve commenced a full and thorough investigation and our engineering teams are performing maintenance checks on the aircraft, which for now has been taken out of service.”
The aircraft has been taken out of service and engineering teams are performing maintenance checks on it, the airline added.

It is understood Virgin Atlantic’s flying programme has not been disrupted by the incident.

The tow movement was provided by a ground handling company under contract by Virgin Atlantic.

Alex Whittles, the passenger of another plane, witnessed the incident.

He tweeted: “Just witnessed a plane crash at Heathrow! A tug pushing back a Virgin 787, crashed the wing into a BA A350.”
“He drove the plane right over the hash markings on the ground,” he added.

The British Airways plane had recently arrived from Ghana capital Accra. It was due to depart on the return journey at 12.40pm from Gate 25 at Terminal 3.

The departure for the Accra journey has been pushed back to 6.30pm but the airport, according to live flight boards, does not appear to have many other alterations on Saturday afternoon.

A BA statement read: “One of our aircraft, whilst stationary at Heathrow earlier today, was involved in a collision with another airline’s jet, which was being towed from a stand at the time.

“Our aircraft is being assessed by our engineering teams and we have provided an alternative aircraft to limit the impact on our customers.”

The Metropolitan Police said: “On Saturday 6 April at 12:09hrs aviation police were made aware of a collision between two aircrafts and a tug vehicle.

“Officers attended the scene and concluded that the aircraft being pulled by the tug hit into the wing of a stationary aircraft.

“There were passengers on board one of the aircrafts at the time of the collision.
“There were no reported injuries.”

A Heathrow spokesperson said: “We are working alongside emergency services and our airline partners in response to an incident involving two aircraft on the ground earlier today.

“At present, no passenger injuries have been reported and we do not anticipate there to be any ongoing impact to airport operations.”
London Fire Brigade said crews from Heathrow, Hayes and Heston fire stations attended the scene.

“Firefighters responded to reports of an incident at London Heathrow Airport in Heathrow.

“One aircraft came into contact with another whilst being towed from a stand. There were no passengers or crew onboard and there were no reports of any injuries.”