Blue Ash woman onboard London flight forced to make emergency landing

Blue Ash woman onboard London flight forced to make emergency landing

CINCINNATI, Ohio (FOX19) - A Blue Ash woman is happy to be on the ground again after a fire onboard her plane to London forced the pilot to make an emergency landing before ever getting across the pond.

Kristen Snyder is with a group of seven people from Blue Ash who were on a plane July 4 headed to London for a few days before a fabulous multi-country cruise.

She told FOX19 NOW it was a little disconcerting seeing the flight attendants racing down the aisle with fire extinguishers in-hand and hearing the announcement from the pilot saying everything was OK - but they had to land the plane.

"We had boarded our plane for London from JFK,” said Snyder.

The Virgin Atlantic Flight was headed to London on the Fourth of July, but Snyder said they were not in the air a half hour, when they smelled smoke and saw flight attendants grab fire extinguishers, heading toward the front of the plane.

“The captain came on and said, ‘there’s a fuse issue,’ and we were all safe and not to panic, but of course, some people did. You know it’s quite a scary situation,” she said.

It turns out the culprit was a phone charger, which caused a small fire in first class.

"They told us it was a fuse at first, but it turned out to be a portable phone charger, that was stuffed in between the seats,” said Snyder. "We're unsure if it's a passenger that was on, or if it was a previous passenger's who had gotten off and they missed it while cleaning the plane.”

The flight crew told them they’d have to make an emergency landing in Boston. More than a dozen fire trucks greeted them on the tarmac.

"Up and down the aisles there were firemen. I think they put their biggest guy on the plane near the door because he was enormous,” said Snyder, who added, they were stuck nearly two hours waiting to deplane.

"Fourth of July fireworks were going off, which gave us some entertainment sitting on the plane,” she said.

Snyder said they were directed to grab their belongings before deplaning, but it was so dark, which only added to the confusion.

“When people got angry at the ticket counters, she said policeman told them to get food and water, but nothing was open," she said. “No one rushed the doors. I would say that started later, when people got hungry and tired and they were standing at the ticket counter, I would say that was probably where people showed their most true colors."

They landed Friday in London, just before 4 p.m. EST.

"We lost a day in London, but it definitely could have been a lot worse," said Snyder. "We've had an hour and a half of sleep in 48 hours!"

But she said they were awake enough to grab a pint, before getting to bed.

“It can only go up from here," Snyder laughed.

Their group will take a cruise from Ireland, Iceland, Norway, Belgium and more, before heading back home.

Snyder said she’s been told the North Seas are calm, so they’re all hoping for a fun and uneventful cruise.

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