A Maui-bound Hawaiian Airlines flight was forced to return to LAX three times because of three separate technical faults. The flight was eventually canceled and passengers were eventually compensated. Hawaiian said that the ETOPS flight required it to “operate to a more stringent safety standard.”
A recent Hawaiian Airlines flight bound for Maui was forced to return to Los Angeles three times over three separate faults, CNN reports. The incident occurred on Saturday and impacted Hawaiian Airlines Flight 33, which was intended to carry 207 passengers to Kahului Airport (OGG).
Alex Da Silva, the carrier’s senior manager, confirmed that, in two of the three instances, the flight had departed LA before being forced to return to the ground. The flight was eventually canceled and Da Silva confirmed that each of the turn backs were related to different problems with separate systems.
In addition to being refunded for the flight, the outlet reports that all of the unlucky passengers were offered $100 to be credited against a future Hawaiian Airlines flight. Additionally, all were given accommodation and meal vouchers. The outlet also states that passengers were offered other flight arrangements.
In a statement quoted by the outlet, the carrier said, “Safety is our top priority, and we apologize for the inconvenience to all our guests who were aboard Flight 33 from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Maui’s Kahului Airport today. We understand our guests’ disappointment and deeply regret their travel plans were disrupted.”
The airline explained that as the flight was classed as an Extended-range Twin-engine Operational Performance Standards (ETOPS) service – to be operated over a large swathe of the Pacific – it had been acting out of an abundance of caution.
“These flights have more rigorous safety requirements because of the greater distance between suitable airports. When there is an abnormality on an over-land flight it can, and often does, continue to its destination. However ETOPS flights operate to a more stringent safety standard,” it said.
The airline added, “Our aircraft have redundant systems, yet our standard is to respond to any indication of abnormalities with an abundance of caution.”