Gatwick delays: Hundreds left stranded at wrong airports after BA jet forced to make emergency landing

Sean Morrison, Ella Wills
The runway was closed and flights were diverted as emergency services rushed to the scene (file image): Sean Savva/Twitter

Hundreds of air passengers faced a travel nightmare this morning after planes were diverted to the wrong airports following an emergency landing at Gatwick.

All incoming aircraft were on diversion when a plane performed an emergency landing due to a hydraulic fluid leak, according to reports.

Flights were diverted to Birmingham and Luton after Flight BA2605 was forced to land with a technical fault in the early hours of Friday.

The British Airways flight from Naples landed at the West Sussex airport at about 12.30am after an emergency was declared.

The airport said unspecified technical problems were being investigated, and that the plane had been inspected while on the runway.

No-one was injured in the incident and passengers were able to disembark the plane a short time later.

A spokeswoman for Gatwick Airport said: "A British Airways flight that was inbound from Naples to London Gatwick landed with a technical fault, which resulted in the aircraft stopping on the runway whilst an inspection of the aircraft took place.

"During this time, our runway remained temporarily unavailable while we switched over to our stand-by runway.

"As a result of the runway being unavailable, a number of aircraft diverted away from Gatwick."

A spokeswoman for British Airways added: "Our flight landed safely after our pilots requested a priority landing as a precaution after a technical fault.

"The safety of our customers and crew is always our top priority, and our engineers are currently conducting a thorough check of the aircraft."

Passengers were left stranded at the wrong airports following the disruption caused by the incident.

Sean Savva was on and EasyJet flight from Corfu that was scheduled to land at Gatwick.

He said the plane was forced to divert to Luton.

Mr Savva told the Standard: "We were first told that there was a technical fault with a BA plane so we were forced to change trajectory upwards and it turned out to be a hydraulic leak.

"Originally we were going to circle around but we were told that we were going to have to land at a new airport."

Paul Gilvary tweeted that some flights were being diverted to Birmingham.

An easyJet service from Paphos and a TUI flight from Lanarca were also diverted to other airports before Gatwick's stand-by runway was opened.