British Airways passengers had a nine-hour ‘flight to nowhere’

  • The British Airways flight did not reach its intended destination of Dallas, Texas
  • Just after crossing the Canadian border, the Boeing 878-9 had to turn back
  • The airline has apologised to the passengers onboard

Published on Jun 14, 2024 at 10:19 PM (UTC+4)
by Ben Thompson

Last updated on Jun 15, 2024 at 11:05 AM (UTC+4)
Edited by Amelia Jean Hershman-Jones

Long-haul flights can often feel like a journey with no destination, but a recent British Airways flight was just that.

Originally intended to go from London Heathrow to Texas, the plane ended up turning around when it reached North America.

So after nine hours in the air, passengers ended up back at their starting point.

READ MORE! Boeing 737 vs Airbus A320: which is the best commercial plane in the world?

What happened aboard the British Airways flight?

Flight records showed that they traveled 7,779km (4834 miles) on their ‘flight to nowhere’.

What was the reason for the turnaround?

A minor technical issue, according to the airline.

The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, a model that was previously captured taking off with incredible power from Sint Maarten with spectators close by, was due to touch down at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

It had just crossed the Canadian border when it turned back.

Usually a passenger plane, there’s only one private Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

The passengers were ultimately up in the air for nine-and-a-half hours – a successful flight to Dallas would have taken 30 to 40 minutes longer.

But it would probably be much shorter with this supersonic nuclear-powered plane that could fly from London to New York in less time than a soccer game.

Upon arriving back in London, passengers were rebooked onto alternative flights to Houston.

In a statement, British Airways said: “The flight returned to London Heathrow as a precaution due to a minor technical issue. It landed safely and customers disembarked as normal.

“We’ve apologized to our customers for the disruption to their journey.”

Other mishaps aboard commercial planes

Earlier this year, a commercial plane accidentally hit supersonic speeds over the Atlantic.

Footage from inside the cabin revealed just how surprised passengers were.

The US National Weather Service claims that the passenger jet was pushed to nearly 1,300 km/h, which is faster than the speed of sound.

The Atlantic jet stream usually has winds traveling at speeds close to 177 km/h (110 mph) but it’s known to intensify at times, particularly during the winter months.

# Tags - Airplanes, Boeing, Travel


Ben Thompson

Ben got his start in journalism at Kennedy News and Media, writing stories for national newspapers, websites and magazines. Now working as a freelancer, he divides his time between teaching at News Associates and writing for news sites on all subjects.