Cargo plane makes unusual return to New York after horse breakout


WEB DESK: In an unexpected turn of events, a cargo plane en route from New York to Belgium was compelled to return to its departure point after a horse broke free on board, just half an hour into the flight.

According to an air traffic control recording obtained by Live ATC, the Boeing 747 cargo plane contacted authorities to report the incident. The pilot calmly explained, “Yes sir, we are a cargo plane. We have a live animal, a horse, on board the airplane, and the horse managed to escape its stall. We don’t have a problem as of flying-wise, but we need to return to New York. We cannot get the horse back secure.”

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FlightRadar24 data indicated that the plane had ascended to 31,000 feet before executing a U-turn off the coast of Boston. To comply with safe landing weight regulations, the aircraft then released approximately 20 tonnes of fuel over the Atlantic.

The pilot further requested air traffic control to arrange for a veterinarian to be present upon landing at New York’s JFK airport.

Upon touchdown, a control tower worker inquired if the pilot needed assistance, to which he responded, “On the ground, negative, on the ramp, yes. We have a horse in… difficulty.”

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