Air China Flight Makes Emergency Landing in Singapore Due to Engine Fire; Passengers Safe
In Singapore, an Air China flight originating from Chengdu in Sichuan province was forced to execute an emergency landing on a Sunday afternoon due to a fire outbreak in its left engine. This incident led to the temporary closure of a runway at Changi Airport for nearly three hours, causing disruptions in both incoming and outgoing flights.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) reported that nine passengers on board the Air China flight suffered minor injuries due to smoke inhalation and minor abrasions during the evacuation process. The flight, which took off from Tianfu International Airport at 11:05 am, eventually touched down on Changi's Runway 3 at approximately 4:15 pm. The aircraft was carrying 146 passengers and nine crew members.
CAAS announced that the affected runway was closed temporarily but was reopened at 7:02 pm after safety checks were conducted. Additionally, one aircraft had to be redirected to Batam, Indonesia, due to the closure of the runway.
The disabled aircraft was towed away around 6 pm. Flight CA403 had reported smoke in its forward cargo hold and lavatory while en route to Changi Airport. Consequently, it declared an emergency and requested a priority landing at approximately 3:59 pm. Following the landing, the emergency slides on the aircraft were deployed to facilitate a swift evacuation. The Airport Emergency Service (AES) promptly responded to the situation and managed to extinguish the fire at around 4:25 pm.
A passenger recounted her experience to The Straits Times, stating that the fire erupted in the final 40 minutes of the flight. The 15-year-old Chinese student, who had been visiting home during the September school break, mentioned that she initially did not realize the engine was on fire but detected a strong odor resembling a blend of rubber and gasoline. After landing, Song and other passengers were directed to an area to complete necessary paperwork and retrieve their luggage.