SINGAPORE - Singapore Airlines (SIA) passengers in New Delhi found their departure delayed for about 17 hours when their Airbus 380 was grounded due to a technical glitch that affected the nose wheel.
Flight SQ403, which was scheduled to take off at about 10pm local time on Wednesday (May 8), eventually left the Indian capital city at about 3pm on Thursday (May 9), SIA said in response to queries from The Straits Times.
There were 389 passengers on board the aircraft, which is scheduled to land at Changi Airport at about 11pm on Thursday.
The problem with the aircraft was first discovered during the flight from Singapore to Delhi on Wednesday afternoon.
Before the arrival of Flight SQ406, its pilots had reported a technical glitch to air traffic controllers. The aircraft landed safety at about 8.20pm, half an hour later than scheduled.
“Upon inspection, there were indications of a hydraulic leak in the nose landing gear area,” an SIA spokesman said.
As a result, the superjumbo had to be towed to the parking bay. A normal disembarkation was subsequently carried out, he added.
“At no point were any of the passengers or crew on board in any danger,” the spokesman stressed, adding that there were 203 passengers and 25 crew on the flight.
The Delhi International Airport, which operates the Indira Gandhi International Airport, said in a statement that pilots had reported a technical issue with the front wheel of the aircraft.
“We had made all the possible arrangements and fire tenders along with medical team were kept on standby to tackle any emergency condition.”
While no injuries were reported, Indian media reported that the runway had to be closed for 18 minutes, which affected several other departures.
Because of the problem with the aircraft, the same plane which had been scheduled to operate SQ403 from New Delhi to Singapore was delayed.
Passengers were provided with accommodation and assistance for alternate travel connections.
“Singapore Airlines sincerely apologises for the inconvenience caused,” the spokesman said.