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An Icelandair flight was forced to make an emergency landing in Canada on Friday night when the cockpit windshield shattered.
Icelandair Flight 688 took off from Orlando (MCO) for Reykjavik (KEF) at 7pm ET on Friday. The airline says that while the flight was following its route through Canada, the pilots “noticed a crack in one of the cockpit windows” on the Boeing 757-200s and diverted to the nearest Canadian airport, Bagotville (YBG). The flight landed at YBG at about 10:19pm ET.
Hi Scott, flight FI688 from Orlando to Iceland was on route over Canada when pilots noticed a crack in one of the cockpit windows. Following standard procedures, they diverted to a nearby airport in Bagotville.
— Icelandair (@Icelandair) October 20, 2018
That language from Icelandair seems a bit of an understatement when compared with a photo of the aircraft upon landing. One panel of the windshield appeared shattered. There was reportedly no depressurization, suggesting that the outer panels were the only ones to begin cracking.
PHOTO SHATTERED WINDOW
Yesterday’s Icelandair #FI688 Orlando to Reykjavik suffered a broken windshield while at cruise altitude. Flight diverted to Bagotville. Passengers stayed in hotels overnight are now continuing their journey in a replacement aircraft.
📷 Maxime Vibert-Ward pic.twitter.com/DRso2DbIu0
— Tom Podolec Aviation (@TomPodolec) October 21, 2018
It isn’t clear what caused the window panel to shatter. The airline said it booked all 155 passengers and seven crew members in hotels for the night and sent a different aircraft to take them to KEF the next day.
USA Today reports the pilots executed a rapid descent, dropping 26,000 feet in 10 minutes.
Shattered aircraft windows have been an extra sensitive maintenance issue after a window cracked after being hit by engine shrapnel on a Southwest flight led to one woman, Jennifer Riordan, almost being sucked out of the plane in April. Riordan later died from her injuries.
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