[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 October 2007, 16:54 GMT 17:54 UK
Heathrow crash inquiry continues
Damaged wing (reader video grab)
Both airliners were full when the collision happened
Investigations are continuing into a collision between two planes at Heathrow Airport.

British Airways (BA) said a Boeing 747, in a collision with a SriLankan Airlines Airbus A340 on Monday night, had been inspected by engineers.

A BA spokesman said the damage to the wing had been fixed and the plane would now return into normal operation.

The BA plane was stationary and the SriLankan Airlines airliner was taxiing to the runway when they touched wings.

Crew from both planes and control tower staff will be interviewed as part of an investigation by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch.

No injuries

A spokesman for BA said on Tuesday evening: "The plane has been in a hangar all day to allow engineers to inspect it and the damage to be fixed.

"It will return into normal operation later today."

He added that all remaining passengers were expected to be on a flight at 1830 BST.

SriLankan Airlines said it was "a minor incident involving a British Airways aircraft when taxiing to the runway at Heathrow".

"It is reported that the wing tips of the two aircraft brushed against each other while taxiing."

There was some sort of bump - no more than if the pilot had put the brakes on a bit hard
Andy Croll, BA passenger

Heathrow's operator BAA confirmed there had been an incident at about 2220 BST and that there were no reported injuries.

Andy Croll, 28, a web designer who lives in Singapore, was returning home on the BA flight when the collision happened.

He said: "We were a bit late getting out of the gate and they said we were waiting to get off the ground.

"Then there was some sort of bump - no more than if the pilot had put the brakes on a bit hard."

'Chunk of wing'

Mr Croll said a few minutes later there was an announcement by the pilot saying they had been involved in an incident and engineers were coming to check it out.

About two hours later Mr Croll and his fellow passengers were still on board waiting to take off.

He said: "I was in the middle of the plane so I couldn't see the SriLankan Airlines plane that hit us. So when we got off I was surprised when I saw a 5ft chunk of wing on the tarmac."

Darren and Caroline Beck
Darren and Caroline Beck were on their honeymoon

Newly weds Darren Beck, 34, and Caroline Beck, 22, from Portsmouth, Hampshire, were heading to the Maldives for their honeymoon when the accident happened.

Mr Beck said: "There was a bang and the plane stopped very suddenly. The captain put the brakes on very quickly.

"People were calm on the flight, but everyone was confused."

Mr Beck, who was sitting next to the wing, went on: "We only knew what had happened because we could see part of the wing had come off from the British Airways plane."

He said passengers had to wait about three hours before being allowed to get off the plane.

The BA flight was bound for Singapore with 328 passengers on board while the Airbus was headed for Colombo in Sri Lanka carrying 286 passengers and crew.

SITE OF THE AIRCRAFT COLLISION
Graphic




VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
A passenger describes the moment of impact



SEE ALSO

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific