The Qantas plane had to return to Sydney after takeoff. Picture: Flight Aware
The Qantas plane had to return to Sydney after takeoff. Picture: Flight Aware

Lightning strike forces Qantas flight back to Sydney

A QANTAS plane has been diverted back to Sydney shortly after takeoff due to a suspected lightning strike.

The regional plane en route to Port Macquarie was sent back to Sydney Airport on Tuesday morning so it could be checked for damage.

A Qantas spokesman told the Daily Telegraph aircraft were designed to withstand lightning strikes but airline policy meant the plane had to land for inspection.

"Port Macquarie does not have the engineering support required for this inspection so the flight returned to Sydney," the spokesman said.

The plane had to be checked for any damage. Picture: File, iStock
The plane had to be checked for any damage. Picture: File, iStock

"Aircraft are designed to withstand and fly safely when struck by lightning but it is policy that they get inspected at their arrival port after a strike."

Passengers were able to board another flight.


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