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Flights suspended at Shannon Airport following fire

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All flights have been suspended following a fire at Shannon Airport early on Thursday morning.

As the Omni Air International Jet Boeing 767-300 was about to depart shortly after 6am, air traffic controllers noticed smoke coming from the jet’s right landing side gear as it taxied along the runway. The civilian airline transports personnel for the US military.

Initially the flight crew thought the smoke was coming from the braking system so they stopped on the runway and requested a tug to bring the jet back to the parking stand. As the jet made its way towards the terminal, air traffic controllers called the flight crew again instructing them to evacuate immediately as a fire beginning to break out on the left side landing gear. The aircraft was then brought to a stop with passengers and crew exiting via two emergency slides on the plane’s right side.

Fire crews dealt with the blaze as they extinguished the fire. In a statement, Shannon Group confirmed airport operations had been temporarily suspended as they attempt to remove the aircraft from the runway which is the longest in Ireland.

Omni Air International released a statement announcing they investigating the matter and confirmed “Initial reports indicate no serious injuries to passengers or crew. Our primary concern at this time is for their safety. We are participating in the investigation of this incident and will release further information as it becomes available.”

Flights to Heathrow (Aer Lingus), Birmingham (Aer Lingus) and Edinburgh (Aer Lingus) have all been cancelled. Check-in time has been suspended by Delta and American Airlines until further notice.

At 10am, a statement said “Shannon Airport remains closed as the situation is ongoing. All passengers are advised to contact their airlines.

Newmarket-on-Fergus native, Páraic McMahon is a freelance journalist and broadcaster currently working for numerous national and local publications including The Clare Echo, The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent, The Irish Times, RTÉ, TheJournal.ie, The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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