Lucky escape after crash landing
A passenger on a flight bound for Inverness which crash-landed without its front wheel in Belfast has revealed he feared he would not make it off the plane alive.
Raymond Hill was one of 52 passengers on board Flybe flight BE331 as it took off from Belfast on Friday just after 11am.
It was expected to land in the Highland capital around an hour later but instead passengers were told there was a problem with one of the plane’s wheels just moments after taking off from George Best Belfast City Airport.
After an hour of trying to work out how to fix the problem mid-air the plane’s captain told passengers and three crew to prepare for an emergency landing.
Mr Hill, 57, who lives near Belfast, said: “It seemed like a week up there. We were just holding hands and some people were crying.
“Nobody spoke as the staff went through the drills about what to do when we landed. It was very eerie.”
The flight was diverted to Belfast International Airport for its dramatic landing.
One passenger was taken to hospital with a sprained thumb but there were no other injuries.
The airport’s operations director Alan Whiteside said: “It was stressful for the crew, but it was probably just as stressful for the passengers.”