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Investigation concludes after plane plunged 15,000ft

The pilot radioed Mayday after he was forced to descend 15,000ft Photo: PA

The plane was travelling from Manchester to Jersey when it dropped 15,000ft over Dudley due to a sudden fall in cabin pressure, says report.

The pilot radioed 'Mayday' as he was forced to descend from 25,000ft to 10,000ft.

Crew members had to wear oxygen masks due to a faulty valve on the Flybe plane which was carrying four crew members and 23 passengers.

The incident happened on 8 December 2016.

Air Accidents Information Branch (AAIB)'s report classed it as a 'serious incident'.

The report said:

There was a loss in cabin pressurisation indicated by a master warning with associated triple chime alert. The co-pilot noted the warning and immediately called for oxygen and donned his oxygen mask.

The commander handed control to the co-pilot, directed him to initiate a descent and inform ATC. The co-pilot started the descent using the autopilot and then disengaged the autopilot to manually fly a descent at 3,500 fpm.

By this time the commander had donned his oxygen mask and re-took control, reengaged the autopilot and declared a Mayday.

The cause of the pressurisation problem was the outflow valve, serial number 00369 which the evidence suggests had a history of being causal or contributory to pressurisation problems in other aircraft.

– AAIB
Crew members were forced to wear oxygen masks Credit: PA

A Flybe spokesman said:

Flybe worked closely with the AAIB during the course of this investigation.

The airline industry operates under the strictest of regulatory regimes, which is why aviation remains the safest of all forms of public transport.

– Flybe

The report also stated that the valve has been replaced and the aircraft has now returned to service.

Passengers were informed of the incident over the PA and there were no injuries.