Virgin Atlantic plane makes emergency landing at Gatwick with landing-gear problem



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LONDON — A Virgin Atlantic jet bound from London to Las Vegas turned back and made an emergency landing at Gatwick Airport on Monday after developing a problem with its landing gear.

The airline confirmed the Boeing 747-400, carrying 447 passengers and 15 crew members, landed safely about four hours after it took off. Television images showed the jet on the runway as fire trucks and ambulances waited nearby.

The plane's emergency chutes were not deployed and there were no immediate reports of injuries. Gatwick said other flights could face delays because the Virgin jet was still on the runway.

The airline said the plane undertook "a non-standard landing procedure" because of "a technical issue with one of the landing gears."

The airport said the flight, VS43, took off at about 11:45 a.m. Monday. Flight-tracking websites show it circled off the coast of southwest England before turning back to Gatwick, south of London. It circled near the airport, and photos appeared to show a set of wheels on its right-side landing gear had not fully descended.

Emergency services were on standby for the landing — standard procedure when a plane has to land with a technical problem.

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