Inaugural Icelandair Flight Ruined by Bad Smell
'Rubber smell' gets celebratory flight diverted
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2017 3:48 PM CDT
In this image released on Monday, May 15, 2017, an Icelandair Boeing 757-200 painted with a new livery depicting the Vatnajokull glacier in Iceland is seen in flight over the glacier itself.   (Icelandair via AP Images)

(Newser) – Icelandair was supposed to fly its first flight from Philadelphia to Reykjavik overnight. Instead, the flight ended up being diverted to Boston early Wednesday thanks to what the airline is calling an "unusual" smell, ABC News reports. Pilots decided to land after they couldn't determine what was causing the smell, which NBC Philadelphia reports was also described as smelling like rubber. The flight, which departed Tuesday night, was over Canada at the time. The mayors of both cities were onboard the flight, with Philadelphia's mayor's office issuing a statement calling the incident a "significant inconvenience" and "obviously very out of the ordinary."

It was a less-than-ideal twist in what was supposed to be a celebration of the inaugural flight; Icelandair had introduced a new glacier-themed plane for the occasion, and promotional events included a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a water cannon salute. It's still not clear what caused the smell, but both mayors were again en route to Iceland on a new flight out of Boston Wednesday afternoon, Philly.com reports. All the other passengers on the flight were to be accommodated on Wednesday flights out of Boston as well.

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