Passengers on a Lufthansa flight last Monday flew for eight hours and landed 85 miles from where the plane took off.
Flight LH404 departed from Frankfurt, Germany, and was destined for JFK Airport in New York but was forced to do a U-turn as it reached the Atlantic because of a fault in the plane's hydraulics system.
Frankfurt Airport is closed at night, so the plane was forced to land in nearby Cologne and passengers were transported by bus back to Frankfurt, a Lufthansa spokesman told Business Insider.
The spokesman said that the plane made a safe landing and that there were no problems despite the concern about the hydraulics system.
Passengers on a Lufthansa flight from Frankfurt, Germany, to New York had an extremely frustrating day last Monday when their plane was forced to turn back having only just reached the Atlantic because of a fault in the hydraulics system.
The plane flew for eight hours but eventually landed in Cologne, 85 miles from where it took off.
Lufthansa Flight LH404, an Airbus A340-600, departed from Frankfurt Airport at 5:53 p.m. local time on December 9 and traveled for close to four hours until it made a U-turn and flew back to Germany, landing in the airport in Cologne at 1:53 a.m., a Lufthansa spokesman told Business Insider.
The Lufthansa spokesman said the plane was over the Atlantic near Ireland when the crew became aware of a fault in the hydraulics system.
He said the decision to turn the plane around was not due to an emergency but was a "precautionary measure" stemming from worries that the plane's main gear would face problems when it landed in New York.
But because Frankfurt Airport is closed from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m., the aircraft was diverted to Cologne and the passengers were put on buses back to Frankfurt.
"Some passengers re-booked for the same flight and others whose final destination was not New York City booked different flights," the spokesman told Business Insider.
He said that the plane made a safe landing and that there were no problems in Cologne despite worry about the hydraulics system.
In a somewhat similar incident, passengers on a KLM flight in November were forced to endure an 11-hour journey that ended with them being dropped them off exactly where they started because of an erupting volcano.
Flight KL685 took off from Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport and made it all the way to eastern Canada when the crew realized that a volcanic eruption in Mexico meant that the flight wouldn't be able to land there. The flight turned around and headed back to Amsterdam.
The Dutch airline told the aviation news website Simple Flying that "landing at another airport was not possible, because of the visa requirements of passengers and as there was a large cargo of horses on board."
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