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Image: Michael Probst/AP/Press Association Images

Off-duty pilot helps to land Lufthansa plane at Dublin Airport

A Boeing 747 en route to Frankfurt made an emergency landing at Dublin Airport yesterday morning after one of the pilots became incapacitated with a migraine.
Nov 20th 2012, 11:29 AM 26,389 68

AN OFF-DUTY pilot helped to land a Lufthansa flight from Newark to Frankfurt at Dublin Airport yesterday morning after the flight’s co-pilot became incapacitated with a migraine.

The incident happened at around 5.30am yesterday morning when the co-pilot on board the Boeing 747 flight LH403 from Newark to Frankfurt took ill with a suspected migraine.

An off-duty pilot was a passenger on the plane and identified themselves to the cabin crew, offering to assist in landing the aircraft – which had declared a mayday – at Dublin Airport.

A spokesperson for Lufthansa said that the person was a fully-licensed pilot but said that even in their absence the captain would have maintained full control of the flight.

The spokesperson said that this was the case in this instance and the captain landed the plane with the passenger providing “extra back-up” according to the German airline’s spokesperson.

The flight landed at Dublin Airport shortly before 6am and the emergency was stood down.

A spokesperson for Dublin Airport Authority said: “There was an aircraft emergency, the flight landed as normal and the emergency was stood down.”

The co-pilot was taken to Beaumont Hospital as a precautionary measure and the long-haul aircraft continued its journey to Frankfurt later in the day.

This audio from air traffic control details some of the incident:

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Hugh O'Connell


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