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Singapore Airlines Launches Investigation after Plane Loses Power in Both Engines Mid-Air, Dropping 13,000 Feet in Seconds

( [email protected] ) May 27, 2015 02:15 PM EDT
Singapore Airlines has launched an investigation after one of its widebody jets temporarily lost power to both its engines on a flight from Singapore to Shanghai, reportedly descending 13,000 feet before regaining altitude.
Flight SQ836 was flying at 39,000 feet and carrying 182 passengers and 12 crew members when the jet engines lost power three-and-a-half hours into Saturday’s five-hour journey. Reuters

Singapore Airlines has launched an investigation after one of its widebody jets temporarily lost power to both its engines on a flight from Singapore to Shanghai, reportedly descending 13,000 feet before regaining altitude.

The Daily Mail reports that Flight SQ836 was flying at 39,000 feet and carrying 182 passengers and 12 crew members when the jet engines lost power three-and-a-half hours into Saturday's five-hour journey. The jet dropped to 26,000ft before power was restored, and climbed back to 31,200ft before making its descent and landing in Shanghai about one hour and 40 minutes later, the report said.

"Both engines experienced a temporary loss of power, although one engine returned to normal operations almost immediately," a spokesperson from Singapore Airlines told MailOnline Travel.

"The pilots followed operational procedures to restore normal operation of the second engine by putting the aircraft into a controlled descent, before climbing again.The flight continued normally to Shanghai and touched down uneventfully at 10:56pm local time."

In a statement, the airline explained that no 'anomalies' were detected in either of the engines when they were 'thoroughly inspected and tested' upon arrival in Shanghai, and that it is investigating the incident in collaboration with Rolls-Royce and Airbus.

Channel News Asia notes that weather radar charts show the plane was heading into a powerful storm at the time, the same one that had caused chaos at Chek Lap Kok airport throughout the weekend. Thus, weather, mechanical and technical issues will be looked at to determine the cause of loss of both engines mid-flight.

Flight safety across Asia has come under scrutiny over the past 15 months following several high-profile plane crashes. In May 2014, Malaysia Airlines made headlines after a plane flying to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur carrying 239 passengers and crew lost contact with the ground and then switched off its transponder before disappearing. While the jet is believed to have crashed in the Indian Ocean off Australia's coast, no debris from the flight has been found.

Then, in September, a Malaysian plane was shot down in eastern Ukraine while flying over disputed territory, killing all 283 passengers, including 80 children, and 15 crew members on board.

Later in 2014, an AirAsia Bhd. jet crashed in Indonesian waters after flying into a storm, carrying 162 passengers and crew.

USA Today notes that Singapore Airlines is Asia's third largest carrier by market value and currently has 30 Airbus A330-300s in its fleet and four more on order. Each plane has a passenger capacity of 285.

The news source adds that several weeks ago, Airbus warned of a technical bug potentially affecting the engines of its A400M military planes.The technical bug was discovered during an internal test after one crashed in Spain, leaving four people dead.