When 207 passengers boarded their Hawaiian Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Maui, Hawaii, on February 1, 2019, they were in for a ride. The pilots had to abort the flight three times for different reasons, before it was finally grounded.
The Airbus A330-243, registered N395HA, was supposed to carry out flight HA33 from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Kahuilui Airport (OGG) in Hawaii, United States. After taking off for the first time, the plane flew for about an hour before turning to land back in Los Angeles where it had to land heavy.
On its second attempt, the aircraft flew in circles off the coast of Los Angeles for another two hours, probably in order to dump enough fuel to land safely, once more, in its departure airport.
#HA33 Los Angeles(LAX)-Kahului(OGG) returned to LAX for the second time today and landed RWY 24R with a total navigation failure.
Emergency equipment standing by as precaution. Crew also reported several passengers irate via @LACoScanhttps://t.co/fgsgvH31IH pic.twitter.com/CA4mS8LCIK
— Flight Alerts (@FlightAlerts_) February 2, 2019
On its third attempt, the plane was still taxiing to the runway when it was asked to return to the gate. The flight was eventually canceled.
All of the turn-backs were due to unrelated technical mishaps with different systems, Alex Da Silva, senior manager at Hawaiian Airlines commented to CNN. Passengers of the flight are entitled to a refund as well as a $100 voucher for future flights.
“Safety is our top priority, and we apologize for the inconvenience to all our guests,” the airline said in a statement, adding “we understand our guests’ disappointment and deeply regret their travel plans were disrupted”.
On January 25, 2019, another Hawaiian Airlines flight, from JFK to Honolulu, had to divert to San Francisco after a crew member suffered a suspected heart attack. He was pronounced dead on arrival.