The flight crew of an Airbus A321 was compelled to return to London Stansted Airport after taking off when it was found that the airliner was lacking two home windows. The flight was being operated by constitution service Titan Airways and headed throughout the Atlantic to Orlando, Florida. Britain’s Air Accidents Investigations Department famous that the plane was underneath floodlights for almost ten hours for a movie shoot the day earlier than. The new lighting warped and distorted the window assemblies mounted to the fuselage.
The A321 was sparsely occupied through the October 7, 2023 flight. There have been 11 crew members onboard: three pilots, an engineer, a loadmaster and 6 cabin crew. All 9 passengers on the aircraft have been workers of TCS World Journey, the posh tour firm chartering the plane. The passengers have been seated collectively in the course of the prolonged cabin, however they famous that the aircraft was noisier and colder than they have been used to.
When the seatbelt indicators have been turned off because the plane soared over 10,000, the loadmaster acquired up and walked towards the again of the cabin. That’s when he seen the harm. The AAIB report reads:
“He seen the elevated cabin noise as he approached the overwing exits and his consideration was drawn to a cabin window on the left aspect of the plane. He noticed that the window seal was flapping within the airflow and the windowpane appeared to have slipped down. He described the cabin noise as ‘loud sufficient to break your listening to,’”
The flight crew stopped their ascent at 14,500 ft after they have been knowledgeable of the state of affairs. The engineer and reduction pilot assessed the harm of 1 window, and the choice was made to return to Stansted Airport with none pressurization points.
The crew didn’t understand that the outer panes on two home windows have been gone and a 3rd window was coming unfastened till they have been on the bottom. On the third window, the rubber seal between the window pane and the fuselage had melted and was peeling out of the body.
The AAIB is additional investigating the incident to stop it from taking place once more, however the resolution appears easy. Don’t fly an plane that has been underneath intense lighting with out checking that it’s protected first.