Tensions gripped at Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport as Air India Airbus A320 declared a top level emergency warning during landing. Details of the incident below :
Aircraft and flight details
Air India Airbus A320neo registered as VT-CIH was operating flight AI 814 from Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport to Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport.
VT-CIH is a 5.9 yrs old Airbus A320neo powered by 2 CFM engines. The aircraft was delivered to Air India on 31 January, 2018. It conducted first flight on 12 January, 2018. Leased by Avolon, it is configured with 12 Business class and 150 Economy class seats.
The aircraft departed from Delhi Airport at 10:44 PM IST. It was expected to arrive at Mumbai Airport at 01:10 AM early morning. The takeoff and cruise face was uneventful. While descending, when the aircraft crossed 27,000 feet, it started flying in a holding pattern. It flew 2 circuits and after descending to 16,000 ft and continued flying.
Air India Airbus A320 declares Mayday
As the aircraft continued its descent, the pilots got an engine fire warning on the Airbus. As a protocol, the pilot extinguished both fire extinguishers in the engine to cool off the engine fire. After this, they declared Mayday emergency call.
When an aircraft declares Mayday warning, it means that it is top level emergency and the Air Traffic Control Tower gives priority to the aircraft declaring this call.
The aircraft with 150 passengers landed safely at Mumbai Airport. The landing was uneventful. Upon inspection by technicians, there were no signs of smoke and fire.
Operational halt at Mumbai Airport
While the landing was uneventful, the aircraft stuck on the runway for about 20 minutes. Mumbai Airport manages traffic with only one runway, similar to London Gatwick Airport. With an aircraft stuck on runway for 20 minutes, the ATC tower instructed an incoming Air India aircraft to divert to Ahmedabad Airport.
After getting the aircraft out of runway, it was taken to bay where it was inspected by maintenance engineers. Nothing suspicious was found.
Air India issued a statement – On December 19, 2023, AI 814, which was traveling from Delhi to Mumbai, noticed a fire warning indicator on one of its engines. An emergency was declared and air traffic control was notified as a precaution. The flight landed safely and no signs of fire or smoke were found upon inspection.
A DGCA official said that the matter is under thorough investigation. The root cause of the false fire warning will be investigated.
Source : CNBC-TV18