Transatlantic flight diverted after pilot’s coffee spills in cockpit

Plane diverted after pilot spilled coffee report

Plane diverted after pilot spilled coffee report

The plane's public address system immediately failed and approximately 40 minutes later the control panel became very hot and the cockpit was filled with a burning electrical smell, the Air Accident Investigations Branch (AAIB) reports. The smoke and the fumes did not result in injuries to any of the 11 crew or 326 passengers onboard.

The pilot was reportedly handed a cup of coffee without a lid by the a member of the crew and accidentally knocked the cup over when the airbus was already over the North Atlantic Ocean, according to CNN.

The damage caused "significant communication difficulty for the flight crew", and forced them to wear oxygen masks, the report said.

This was because the pilots' audio control panels (ACP) started melting and there was smoke in the cockpit.

The incident occurred when the pilot put the coffee on his tray table "while he completed tasks required due to approaching a waypoint".

The AAIB report adds: "The operator also issued a flight crew notice reminding pilots to be careful with liquids".

The incident happened on February 6 and resulted in the Airbus A330 flight from Frankfurt in Germany to Cancun in Mexico being diverted to Shannon.

The Department for Transport report does not say which airline was involved in the incident, but Condor - which is part of British travel company Thomas Cook Group - confirmed that it operated the flight.

Airbus rules recommend that crew use cupholders provided when drinking beverages in the cockpit, however the size of cups made it hard for them to be grasped when in the holder.

It also reminded pilots to be careful with liquids, as well as supplying cups that are an appropriate size for cup holders.

"After the aircraft was fully inspected and repaired by our team of engineers, the flight continued via Manchester due to the legal operating hours of the crew. We apologize for any inconveniences the diversion might have caused to our guests".