Solent grads in BA plane which caught fire

Four former Solent students were on the plane bound for London which caught fire at Las Vegas airport on Tuesday evening. Jay Jennings, Simon Hassett, Luke Jones and Harry Hajiantoni, graduates […]


Four former Solent students were on the plane bound for London which caught fire at Las Vegas airport on Tuesday evening.

Credit: Luke Jones

Embracing stag-life. Credit: Luke Jones

Jay Jennings, Simon Hassett, Luke Jones and Harry Hajiantoni, graduates of Southampton Solent University, were four of 157 customers evacuated from the British airways flight after one of the engines combusted during taxi.

As flames and smoke engulfed the left-hand side of the plane, about to take off en-route to London Gatwick, passengers and staff were forced to flee onto the runway.

As reported by ITV News, Chris Peden, Jay Jennings, Simon Hassett, Luke Jones and Harry Hajiantoni were planning to return home on the flight following a trip away in Vegas for a stag-do.

 Describing the traumatic events, Simon said “An engine on our plane exploded and caught fire when we were taking off from Vegas.”

“We did a bit of a landing then evacuated (very dramatic!!). We’re all fine. A bit shaken.”

Fire crews extinguish the blaze as passengers evacuate Credit: Luke Jones

Fire crews extinguish the blaze as passengers evacuate. Credit: Luke Jones

Luke, meanwhile, saw the silver lining of their experience, saying “As we were taking off the engine exploded!

“The plane was filled with smoke but we all got off all right. We had another night in Vegas, though!”

The airline has revealed that the aircraft ‘experienced a technical issue as it was preparing for take-off’.

McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas took to Twitter at 4.22pm (11.22pm GMT) on Tuesday, following the successful evacuation, to confirm there were no major casualties and that the fire had since been extinguished.

 

In a statement released on Wednesday, British Airways said

‘We are continuing to care for the 157 customers who were involved in the incident with flight BA2276 from Las Vegas to London Gatwick on Tuesday 8 September 2015.

Customers who were taken to hospital have all been released following care and treatment. The National Transportation Safety Board in the US is conducting an investigation into the incident and we will give them our fullest support.

The safety of our customers and crew are always our top priorities, and all of our other flights are continuing to operate as normal.’

Were you a passenger on the flight or did you see the plane up in flames? Tweet us @SotonTab with your experience.