8 Jun 2012

Orion forced to make emergency landing

6:15 pm on 8 June 2012

A Defence Force plane forced to make an emergency landing in Hamilton has continued its journey safely back to Auckland.

The Orion was forced to land at Hamilton Airport just after 1pm on Friday after smoke was detected in the cockpit.

The Air Force says its engineers assessed the plane in Hamilton and discovered a fault in the hydraulic system.

They isolated the problem and the plane carrying 14 people resumed its journey.

The plane had been returning to Whenuapai air base after undertaking a routine patrol for the Ministry for Primary Industries and Maritime New Zealand off the east coast of the South Island.

A thorough examination of the aircraft will take place at Whenuapai.