According to reports, the aircraft declared an emergency while en route from São Paulo (GRU) to London (LHR), and on its return flight to São Paulo, it had to divert to Lisbon (LIS). Here is a breakdown of what transpired.
LATAM Boeing 777 São Paulo to London Flight Emergency
On July 7th, shortly after midnight, a LATAM Airlines Boeing 777-300ER, registered PT-MUC, departed São Paulo (GRU) bound for London Heathrow (LHR) as flight LA8084.
As the aircraft approached London Heathrow, it declared an emergency, indicating a Mayday situation by squawking 7700 over western France.
Initially, the nature of the emergency remained unknown. However, the aircraft successfully landed at Heathrow at 14:38 local time, approximately half an hour ahead of schedule. This early arrival likely allowed the plane to avoid entering a holding pattern, a common occurrence at the UK’s busiest airport.
Following the incident, Simple Flying reached out to LATAM for further information. On July 8th, a spokesperson responded, stating that medical assistance had been requested upon the arrival of flight LA8084 from São Paulo to London.
The request was made due to a passenger falling ill during the flight. Unfortunately, the passenger passed away despite the medical team’s prompt response and efforts.
Challenges on the Return Flight
After landing at London Heathrow, the Boeing 777-300ER commenced its turnaround operations in preparation for the return flight, LA8085, scheduled to depart at 21:25 local time.
However, the aircraft spent over seven hours on the ground before finally taking off at 22:01, heading back to São Paulo.
Approximately two hours into the return flight, an unexpected turn of events occurred as the aircraft crossed over Portugal and ventured into the Atlantic Ocean.
Just off the coast of Portugal, the plane changed course and diverted to Lisbon. It eventually landed in Lisbon approximately three and a half hours after its departure from LHR.
The Boeing 777-300ER involved in these events bears the registration PT-MUC, with line number 740 and manufacturer’s serial number 37666. The aircraft is over 14-and-a-half years old and was initially delivered to TAM Linhas Aéreas in December 2008.
Following the merger of LAN Chile and TAM Brasil, the aircraft became the property of LATAM Airlines Brasil.
Equipped with GE90-115B powerplants, the PT-MUC has accumulated 50,474 flight hours and completed 5,992 cycles as of April 2021, as reported by ch-aviation.
LATAM Airlines Group currently operates a fleet of 10 Boeing 777-300ERs, with an average age of 12.2 years. These aircraft are sequentially registered from PT-MUA to PT-MUJ.
LATAM Airlines’ Boeing 777-300ER faced a challenging sequence of events. This includes an emergency declaration during its São Paulo to London flight and a subsequent diversion to Lisbon on its return journey.
The airline has expressed its condolences for the passenger who tragically lost their life. As investigations unfold, the focus will be on understanding these incidents’ circumstances. Further ensuring the continued safety of LATAM’s operations.
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