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Last Updated: Monday, 25 September 2006, 13:16 GMT 14:16 UK
BA jet flew after engine 'flames'
A British Airways jet
The British Airways transatlantic jet eventually landed safely
Air traffic controllers were "amazed" by a decision to continue a British Airways transatlantic flight after an engine failed on take-off.

After an engine surge, flames were seen coming from the Boeing 747 as it took off from Los Angeles bound for London.

The plane, carrying 351 passengers, eventually did declare an emergency and landed safely in Manchester.

The controllers' comments were revealed in a transcript obtained by the Wall Street Journal.

The crew, which shut down the engine, decided to declare an emergency because of possible low fuel supplies

According to the transcript, one air traffic controller, on hearing the plane was continuing its flight, told a colleague: "If you would have saw what we saw out the window, you'd be amazed at that."

Training deficiencies

The conversation record between the aircraft and the Los Angeles control tower was obtained under US freedom of information laws.

A report earlier this year into the February 2005 incident by the UK's Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) said no evidence had been found to show that the flight continuation posed a significant increase in risk.

It also added that the aircraft landed with more than the required minimum fuel reserves.

But the report stated: "However, there were indications of deficiencies in the training regarding fuel management provided to the flight crew."

A BA spokeswoman said: "We always maintained that the aircraft operated in strict accordance with the (UK) Civil Aviation Authority regulations, and this was consistent with what the AAIB report into the matter said.

"The AAIB found that the action by the crew was in accordance with BA's flight continuation policies, and that the aircraft had sufficient fuel and performance to continue the flight safely.

"The US Department of Transportation is taking no action against BA regarding this incident."

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