Plane turns back after horse on board escapes

By , K24 Digital
On Thu, 16 Nov, 2023 07:37 | < 1 min read
A plane was forced to return to an airport shortly after taking off when a horse got loose on board. PHOTO/Print
A plane was forced to return to an airport shortly after taking off when a horse got loose on board. PHOTO/Print

A plane was forced to return to an airport shortly after taking off when a horse got loose on board.

Around half an hour after leaving New York on its way to Belgium, the Boeing 747 cargo plane contacted air traffic control to inform them of the escaped animal.

“Yes sir, we are a cargo plane,” a pilot can be heard saying in an air traffic control recording.

“We have a live animal, a horse, on board the aeroplane and the horse managed to escape its stall. We don’t have a problem as of flying-wise, but we need to return to New York.

“We cannot get the horse back secure.”

FlightRadar24 data showed the plane had climbed to 31,000ft before being forced to make a U-turn off the coast of Boston.

The audio showed it then dumped around 20 tonnes of fuel over the Atlantic, to ensure the aircraft was not above the safe weight limit for landing.

The pilot can then be heard asking air traffic control to request a vet is present when the flight lands at New York’s JFK airport.

‘We have a horse in… difficulty’

Upon landing, a control tower worker asked the pilot if they required assistance. “On the ground, negative, on the ramp, yes,” he replied. “We have a horse in… difficulty.”

The operator of the 9 November flight, Air Atlanta Icelandic, has been contacted for comment.

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