A Lufthansa Boeing 747 en route to Orlando made an emergency landing in Gander, Newfoundland (Canada) after the pilots noticed smoke in the cockpit.
The pilots used their oxygen masks and immediately initiated the descent to get down to safe ground.
Smoke in the cockpit as a result of an on board fire was the reason of various high profile crashes such as Swissair 111 where 229 passengers and crew died on September 2nd 1998 after a fire originating from the entertainment system spread through the aircraft, fueled by flammable materials.
Reuters reported about the Lufthansa incident (access here).
A Lufthansa Boeing 747 jumbo jet with 363 people on board made an emergency landing in Gander, Newfoundland, in eastern Canada on Tuesday after being diverted due to smoke in the cockpit, the German airline said.
The 345 passengers and 18 crew members on the flight from Frankfurt bound for Orlando, Florida, were uninjured and were able to leave the aircraft without the use of emergency slides, a spokesman for Lufthansa said on Wednesday.
Lufthansa has sent a replacement aircraft to fly the passengers to Florida as well as technicians to investigate the incident.
According to the German newspaper Hessenschau (see here) the flight was Lufthansa LH464 from Frankfurt to Orlando which departed on Tuesday afternoon and also confirmed that the flight carried 345 passengers and 18 crew members.
Smoke and fire is probably one of the most dangerous situations for the aircraft, passengers and crew as the Swissair example shows. Other incidents include crashes caused by self ignited cargo.
The pilots acted quickly and professionally in this situation before anything more serious could happen. Lufthansa will ferry a replacement aircraft over to Gander in order to pick the passengers up and also operate the return flight from Orlando to Frankfurt. Since this takes at least half a day, it’s my guess the passengers had to overnight in Gander even though that’s not reported anywhere.