A British Airways 747 returned to London today – flight 295 landed with two sets of wheels missing or stuck.
According to the Daily Mail, Flight 295 bound for Chicago returned to Heathrow today, after the gear failed to extend.
Here is the (word for word) report from the Aviation Herald:
A British Airways Boeing 747-400, registration G-CIVX performing flight BA-295 from London Heathrow,EN (UK) to Chicago O’Hare,IL (USA), was enroute at FL330 about 160nm south of Keflavik (Iceland) when the crew decided to return to London’s Heathrow Airport due to a technical problem. On approach to Heathrow the crew dumped fuel, lowered the gear very early, subsequently reported an unsafe gear indication for both main gear, only nose and body gear had extended. The aircraft positioned for a 15nm final to Heathrow’s runway 27R and landed safely on nose and body gear only and stopped on the runway about 20 minutes after reporting the unsafe gear.
The airport reported the runway was unavailable for about one hour until the aircraft was secured and towed off the runway.
Passengers reported the crew advised they were returning to London due to a technical problem, about 20 minutes prior to landing the crew announced that the landing gear did not fully extend with only three of five sets of gear having lowered. After the aircraft was towed to the apron, passengers were told to disembark very slowly, aft cabin first, otherwise the aircraft would tip over and settle on its tail.
The aircraft had last flown on Jan 24th 2016, then remained on the ground in Heathrow and was doing its first flight since.
A replacement Boeing 747-400 registration G-CIVI is about to depart Heathrow estimated to reach Chicago with a delay of 10 hours.
According to an AH reader, the number 4 hydraulic system failed to work, thus disabling the system ‘mainly responsible for wing gear, outboard flaps, and normal brakes.’ The open gear doors suggest the crew attempted alternate extension, which failed. Also, according to him, the alternate flaps extension ‘takes ages’, thus accounting for the delay before landing, besides dumping fuel.
KOL172, my new young British friend, lives about two nautical miles from the end of the runway: did you see it?