28 Feb 2008

Continental Micronesia engine incident downplayed

2:43 pm on 28 February 2008

The Guam-based airline, Continental Micronesia, has downplayed an incident on a Majuro/Honolulu flight this week in which observers reported explosions and flashes of flame from an engine.

An airline official in Guam says it was a normal mission and a normal landing despite the plane being forced to return to Majuro soon after take off after it experienced engine problems.

But public relations staffer Grace Garces' comments are contradicted by eyewitness accounts from both passengers and observers at the airport.

One ground observer, Roger Cooper, says a few seconds after the aircraft was airborne, numerous loud explosions and large flashes of flame were seen coming from the right side engine.

Similar reports have come from those on board.

The captain assured passengers that it was probably a bird caught in the engine and that the plane was operating normally.