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Plane Makes Emergency Landing, Bursts Into Flames

Singapore Airlines passengers safe but shaken
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2016 4:44 AM CDT
Plane Catches Fire Moments After Emergency Landing
This image provided by Lee Bee Yee shows the aftermath of an engine fire on a Singapore Airlines flight.   (Lee Bee Yee)

(Newser) – All 222 passengers and 19 crew from a Singapore Airlines flight are safe and unharmed after a terrifying incident early Monday. The airline says the Boeing 777-3000 was on its way from Singapore to Milan when the pilot decided to turn back after receiving an engine oil warning message, the AP reports. It landed back at Singapore's Changi Airport more then four hours later—and just after it came to a halt, its right engine burst into flames as horrified passengers looked on. "By the time the fire engines reached the plane, the flames were about a meter high," passenger Amit Jain tells Today. "When we could see the flames rising, some people were trying to remove their bags from the overhead compartments, which was crazy," he says. "I heard a few people scream 'Open the doors!' and 'Let us out!'"

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The airline and the airport say the blaze was extinguished within minutes, CNN reports. The passengers were transferred to another flight to Milan. Passengers say they could smell oil while the plane was in the air, but they didn't realize how close to death they were until afterward, the BBC reports. Analyst Greg Waldron at Flightglobal says it appears the pilots did everything right by turning back when they discovered the problem and dumping fuel along the way. "When the plane slows down as you land, fuel can cling to the wing and surfaces. Sparks from the hot brakes after they landed could have the triggered the fire and it does appear quite dramatic. But they appear to have gotten that under control very quickly," he says, per Reuters. "There don't appear to be any procedural issues here." (Read more Singapore Airlines stories.)

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