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Fire fighters spray foam on wrong plane during engine emergency

AN Air China’s passenger aircraft caught fire on its engine at an airport in southeast China this morning, but firefighter sprayed foam onto another aircraft waiting nearby. The incident caused the runway to be closed for more than 1.5 hours.

The Boeing 737 with Flight CA1822 from Fuzhou in southeast Fujian Province to Beijing suddenly caught fire on its right engine at 8am when taxing on the runway as it was about to take off, the nation’s flagship carrier said.

The captain of the following Fuzhou Airlines FU6577 found the fire first and informed the Air China captain. The Air China aircraft closed engine and then called the fight fighters, the Fuzhou Airlines said in a statement.

Eight fire trucks arrived within two minutes. However, the vehicles turned to surround the Fuzhou Airlines aircraft and began spraying foam onto the plane, the Fuzhou Airlines said.

When the firefighters realised they picked the wrong plane and moved on to deal with the Air China aircraft with the heating engine, the Fuzhou Airlines aircraft was already all covered up in foams.

The airport authority then decided to close the runway to deal with the aftermath.

All the passengers with the Fuzhou Airlines flight that was scheduled to fly to Jinan in east Shandong Province have to get off the plane, since the aircraft covered with foam has to be washed and pass a safety inspection from the aircraft manufacturer Boeing to fly again, the airline said.

The Fuzhou Airlines then arranged accommodations for all the affected passengers on that flight. Another 12 flights with this airline scheduled to take off from the airport were also delayed by up to five hours.

The runway was reopened at around 9:38am, according to Air China.

“It turned out to be an normal situation as aircraft engines would spark sometimes and it would not threat flying safety,” the Air China said later.



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