'Shaky' AirAsia flight forced back to Australia

Terrified passengers on that flight described a very loud noise soon after it left Sydney for Shanghai. Pic for Representation/AFP
Terrified passengers on that flight described a very loud noise soon after it left Sydney for Shanghai. Pic for Representation/AFP

An AirAsia flight to Malaysia was forced back to Australia yesterday due to a technical problem, with one passenger saying the plane was "shaking like a washing machine". The Airbus A330 from Perth to Kuala Lumpur experienced problems about 90 minutes into the journey. It landed safely, with Perth Airport reporting a "technical issue". "The pilot identified technical issues, turned around and returned," an airport spokesman told AFP, adding that emergency crews were put on standby but not needed.

The Malaysian low-cost carrier only said that the "flight crew are taking precautionary measures to check the aircraft". Terrified passengers on that flight described a very loud noise soon after it left Sydney for Shanghai. No one was hurt. The West Australian newspaper cited passengers on Sunday's flight as saying they heard a bang and then the plane started shuddering. A passenger, Brenton Atkinson, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation the whole plane started shaking, far more than standard turbulence, "It was literally like you were sitting on top of a washing machine. The whole thing was going. We could see the engine out the window, which was really shaking on the wing. Once we landed, we realised one of the blades had actually come off the turbine."

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