An Air India flight going towards Cochin was forced to have an emergency landing in New Delhi soon after its take-off from the Indira Gandhi International Airport because the engineers had failed to remove pins from the landing gear, a spokesperson said on Tuesday.
Two engineers have been taken off duty pending inquiry after they 'forgot' to remove the pins on Monday morning, an Air India spokesperson said. The AI 933 Delhi-Cochin-Dubai plane with 234 passengers on board took off from Indira Gandhi International Airport on Monday at 5:36 AM but was forced to return and make an emergency landing 40 minutes later after the pilot was unable to retract the wheels.
After the plane returned, the pins were found attached to the landing gear, which were then removed. Finally, the plane took off for Cochin at 9:56 AM, after a delay of four hours and two minutes. The pins prevent accidental retraction of the landing gear while the aircraft is on the ground. However, if they are not removed before take-off, the pilot cannot retract the wheel while the plane is in flight.