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Austrian Airlines Flight to New York Forced to Turn Around After Toilets Stop Working

Austrian Airlines Flight to New York Forced to Turn Around After Toilets Stop Working

a large airplane on a runway

An Austrian Airlines flight to New York was forced to turn around just as it was preparing to cross the Atlantic when all of the onboard lavatories stopped working.

The incident happened on Monday when Austrian flight OS89 from Vienna to Newark was just passing Amsterdam, according to an airline spokesperson who confirmed that the plane had to return after the lavatories became inoperative.

According to the airline, the pilots of the 26-year-old Boeing 777-200 aircraft had no other choice than to return to Vienna after a problem was reported with the vacuum flush system that operates the lavatories.

Last year, a toilet flooding incident aboard a Delta Air jet which was crossing the Atlantic on a flight from Prague in the Czech Republic to New York JFK may have caused the autopilot system to repeatedly disconnect despite the best efforts of the pilots.

Investigators are still probing the July 7, 2022, incident and while no conclusions have yet been drawn, safety experts are considering the possibility that flooded lavatories in the cabin could have contributed to the problems faced by the pilots.

It could be that water from the lavatories seeped into sensitive flight control electronics which are underneath the cabin floor.

Earlier this month, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) proposed extra checks on Boeing 787 Dreamliners because of leaky faucets that could result in water damaging ‘flight critical’ computer systems.

It’s not known how many airplanes are affected, and the problem only came to light when an unnamed airline discovered a wet carpet close to the flight deck where the electronic systems are located.

The airline narrowed down the cause of the water to a faulty o-ring seal underneath the wash basin and discovered similar issues across its 787 Dreamliner fleet.

View Comment (1)
  • BA49 went to Seattle on 13Apr with no water at all. The cabin crew were given “at stations” call to all assist in bleeding the system but the plane just went on like that. They don’t care. Nice that others do….

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