Khalid Ayoubi, Aeronautics Online Writer
SEA-TAC International Airport, Wash – As a Hawaiian Airlines Airbus A330 aircraft landed at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport on the night of Tuesday November 7, 2017, one of its engines caught fire in a rare “engine surge” event.
Video captured by a witness inside the terminal shows the aircraft slowing down on the runway when the engine No. 1 engine catches fire:
The fire was then extinguished before the airport fire crew arrived. The plane was then towed safely into the terminal.
Sea-Tac Airport took to twitter to update on the incident; “The aircraft that landed was a ferry flight, meaning only the flight crew was onboard and no passengers.” One passenger wrote: “Glad the pilots are ok, the plane must have freaked out since it s in (Boeing) land, lol.” Another user states “Witnessed #HawaiianAirlines roll by me on the tarmac at SeaTac with the port side engine totally on fire. Flames were as long as the plane. Glad everyone is safe now.”
The event was an “engine surge,” which is usually caused by restricted inlet airflow, causing undesirable compressor section effects and poor flame propagation in the burner cans, resulting in visible flames. Despite looking like an uncontrolled engine fire, the entire fire was contained inside the fan of the engine and never posed a real threat to the aircraft or individuals around the aircraft. Engine surges rarely happen in modern aircraft with well-balanced airflow intake systems, but accidents do happen occasionally.
No injuries have been reported. The Federal Aviation Administration are currently investigating the official cause of the incident.
Featured image from nycplanespotting.com. All other from Aeronautics editor Max Trimm.