Qantas Engine Problem Diverts New York-bound Flight to Fiji

A Qantas flight bound for New York diverted to Fiji after the crew received a warning about a faulty fuel valve.

The Boeing 747 carrying 375 passengers and 20 crewmembers from Sydney to New York via Los Angeles landed in Nadi for repairs yesterday.

Australian media outlets are reporting passengers onboard the flight heard "a loud bang" and then watched black smoke pour out from the affected engine. The captain then reportedly told passengers over the plane's intercom the engine had "cooked itself."

"Just past Nadi the flight crew got a message to say there was a fault with a fuel valve so they returned to Nadi to correct it," a Qantas spokeswoman tells AFP. "They could have flown on, it was just a precautionary measure."

Passengers were given hotel accommodations for the night and were back on track onboard a replacement aircraft this morning, she added.

The incident is another snag in a series of setbacks for the Australian airline, which temporarily suspended flights of its Airbus A380 jets after an engine explosion forced a plane to make an emergency landing in Singapore last November. The airline has also had problems with 747s: Over the weekend a plane bound for Los Angeles experienced engine failure just as it was about to take off from Sydney.

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