'We're about to crash... no we're not', air passengers told

27th August 2010, Comments 0 comments

Terrified passengers flying from London to Hong Kong braced for a possible crash into the sea after a pilot mistakenly played an emergency message, a newspaper reported Friday.

According to The Sun, the 275 passengers on the British Airways Boeing 747 heard the message: "This is an emergency. We may shortly need to make an emergency landing on water."

The passengers prepared for the worst as they headed over the North Sea, until cabin crew ran down the aisles of the plane to reassure them the message had been played in error, the report said.

One passenger, Michelle Lord, 32, told The Sun: "People were terrified. We all thought we were going to die."

Another traveller said: "I can't think of anything worse than being told your plane's about to crash."

BA, which said the incident took place within the last seven days, explained the message was an automatic one that had been triggered by a computer.

A BA spokesman said: "We would like to apologise to passengers on board the flight for causing them undue distress.

"Our cabin crew immediately made an announcement following the message advising customers that it was played in error and that the flight would continue as normal."

© 2010 AFP

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