Air France plane forced to land in Canada due to ‘serious damage’ to engine

Passengers nervously joked to one another as they tried to make sense of the commotion

Air France says a passenger flight en route to California was forced to land in Labrador following “serious damage” to one of the plane’s four engines.

The airline said the plane landed safely Saturday afternoon after being diverted to Goose Bay airport as a precaution in response to a technical issue.

“The regularly trained pilots and cabin crew handled this serious incident perfectly,” the airline said in a statement. ”The passengers are currently being assisted by teams dispatched to the location.”

Passengers on board the aircraft, which departed from Paris for Los Angeles Saturday morning, tweeted photos and video of the plane flying through the clouds with a damaged engine, which appears to have lost its cowling.

Pamela Adams, a travel writer and family therapist from southern California, said she and her husband were on their way home from a trip in France, when six hours into the flight, they got up in the aisle to stretch their limbs.

READ MORE: B.C. plane hit by lightning, forced to perform emergency landing in Vancouver

WATCH: Nearly 20 planes search for aircraft that went missing en route to Kamloops

“We heard this tremendous bang. It was like the plane hit a Jeep at 35,000 feet,” Adams said in a phone interview. “It was a whiplash moment. We grabbed onto something and then we sat down, and the plane righted itself fairly soon.”

Passengers nervously joked to one another as they tried to make sense of the commotion, Adams said. She figured the plane had struck a bird, but then, it became clear that the situation was more “dramatic.”

The pilot came on over the loudspeaker and said the plane had “lost” one of its engines and would be attempting to land in Canada, said Adams.

Rather than worry, Adams said she tried to provide emotional support and bond with other passengers.

About 90 minutes after the initial impact, the plane landed smoothly in Goose Bay, she said.

Adams said passengers were stuck inside the aircraft as emergency vehicles pulled up to the scene.

The crew handed out meals as they waited on the runway for hours, but even with full bellies, she said some passengers were growing restless.

“We’re still sitting in the middle of the tarmac, and they have not announced what’s going to happen next,” said Adams in an interview Saturday afternoon. “It’s increasing people’s anxiety.”

Three hours after landing, Adams tweeted that the experience may provide inspiration for her next book: “Still Stuck on a Plane in Canada.”

Air France said it was working on rerouting passengers.

By Adina Bresge in Halifax, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Council holds last meeting of the year

Council discussed wages, arena upgrades and crime prevention in their Dec. 11 meeting

UPDATE: Motorist dies near Ponoka after loose tire collides with vehicle

Ponoka RCMP seek assistance in locating vehicle belonging to the tire

Toque Toss brings in warm clothing for communities

Bantam AA Tigers asked attendees at their Dec. 10 game to toss hats, mitts, socks and more on the ice

Almost 100 kgs of suspected cocaine seized at Coutts border crossing

84 bricks of suspected cocaine seized from California residents’ vehicle; largest recorded seizure.

New fighter-jet competition to have national ‘economic interest’ requirement

Trudeau government wants to replace Canada’s aging CF-18s with 88 new fighters by as early as 2025

2017 word of the year: Feminism

Merriam-Webster’s word of the year for 2017: ‘Feminism’

200 Russians to compete in Olympics as neutrals

The Russian Olympic Committee expects 200 to compete in South Korea

Researchers claim the ‘man flu’ does exist

Review of scientific studies suggests ‘man flu’ may be more intense: researcher

Trudeau appoints Supreme Court chief justice

Prime Minister Trudeau appoints Richard Wagner as Supreme Court chief justice

WestJet Christmas video turns children’s wishes into reality

This year’s annual video took a new spin on the 12 days of Christmas

Firefighters protect seaside California towns as blaze rages

A flare-up on the western edge of Southern California’s largest and most destructive wildfire sent residents fleeing Sunday

Putin declares victory on visit to air base in Syria

Declaring a victory in Syria, Putin on Monday visited a Russian military air base in the country and announced a partial pullout of Russian forces from the Mideast nation.

Most Read