Plane forced to land after pilot was hit by laser

Plane forced to land after pilot was hit by laser

A Virgin Atlantic flight had to make a mid-air “u – turn” after a laser was shone into the cockpit. As a precautionary measure the Airbus 340 doubled back after the co-pilot reported feeling unwell just a few minutes into the flight. 
 
The flight which was destined to reach New York was forced to return to Heathrow on Sunday night after the strange laser dazed the co-pilot. 
A spokesperson from Virgin Atlantic said: “The VS025 travelling from London Heathrow to New York JFK flight has returned to Heathrow as a precautionary measure due to a laser beam incident.
 
“The safety of our crew and customers is our top priority and we apologise for any inconvenience to those on board.
 
“All customers will be offered overnight accommodation and we will get them on their journey as soon as possible. We are working with the authorities to identify the source of the laser that caused the return of the aircraft to Heathrow.”
A recording of one of the pilots of flight VS025 requesting permission to return was published online.
 
He used the code "pan, pan, pan" to alert air traffic control to an on-board emergency that does not pose a threat to life.
 
“We have a medical issue with one of the pilots after a laser incident after take-off and we are going to return to Heathrow,” says the pilot.
The air traffic controller confirms the route and then returns to the radio to ask for more details of the incident.
 
It was around about six or seven miles west of London,” says the pilot.
A spokeswoman for Virgin Atlantic said the flight landed safely and the airline was now working with the authorities to identify the source of the laser.
“The VS025 travelling from London Heathrow to New York JFK flight has returned to Heathrow as a precautionary measure due to a laser beam incident,” she said.
 
“The safety of our crew and customers is our top priority and we apologise for any inconvenience to those on board. All customers will be offered overnight accommodation and we will get them on their journey as soon as possible.”
 
“Following this incident the First Officer reported feeling unwell. The decision was taken by both pilots to return to Heathrow rather than continue the transatlantic crossing.” Posted by the Airlines flight status website.