Published January 17, 2012
LONDON – Passengers flying over the Atlantic were terrified when it was announced twice that their plane could be about to crash.
British Airways (BA) Flight 206 was at 35,000 feet, halfway from Miami to London's Heathrow Airport, when the taped message was played by accident.
Screams rang out as it was repeated straightaway.
An Edinburgh man said, "It was about 3:00am. An alarm sounded, and we were told we were about to land in the sea. I thought we were going to die. My wife was crying, and passengers were screaming. Then they played an announcement telling us to just ignore the warnings."
Another passenger said, "When we landed, they were handing out letters apologizing, but it was the worst experience of my life. I don't think BA should get away with this."
A BA spokesman said of the scare en route to Heathrow on Friday, "The cabin crew canceled the announcement immediately and sought to reassure customers that the flight was operating normally. We apologize to customers for causing them undue concern."
In August 2010, a message announcing, "We may shortly need to make an emergency landing on water," was played by mistake on a British Airways flight from Heathrow to Hong Kong.