Jack Quann
Jack Quann

17.30 30 Mar 2020


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An Aer Lingus plane which was forced to turn back to Dublin Airport shortly after take-off has resumed its journey to China.

Flight EI-9018 left the airport shortly before 11am this morning, but had to turn around following a bird strike on one of the engines.

The flight is bound for Beijing to collect more personal protective equipment for healthcare workers on the frontline in fighting the coronavirus outbreak.

Aer Lingus said in a statement: "Following a bird strike earlier today, EI9018 travelling from Dublin to Beijing was required to turn back to Dublin. The flight is rescheduled to depart for Beijing at 17.00 local time today."

Earlier today, the plane had made it past Dublin Bay when it had to turn back.

It is believed the plane, which was not carrying any passengers, attempted an emergency landing on one engine.

Witnesses saw flames coming from the engine.

The route of Aer Lingus flight EI-9018

Emergency services were also requested on landing.

The plane landed safety at around 12.30pm where crews followed it to a remote stand.

Aer Lingus said in a statement: "EI9108 has returned to Dublin following a bird strike. Upon landing in Dublin it will be assessed by engineers and upon its clearance for travel a new departure time will be ascertained."

This comes just a day after a successful turnaround flight from Dublin to Beijing.

That flight carried almost €30m of equipment for healthcare workers such as asks, gowns and gloves.

It was the first of a number of flights delivering over €200m worth of personal protective equipment (PPE) to the country.

This article was updated at 5.30pm


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