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Current as of 31/03/17 07:20AM NZST
Patrice Dougan is the Herald's education reporter.

Faulty indicator delays Air NZ flight

An Air New Zealand Boeing 767 lands at Auckland International Airport. Photo / File
An Air New Zealand Boeing 767 lands at Auckland International Airport. Photo / File

A faulty indication system prompted Air New Zealand pilots to abort take-off during departure from Hawaii last night.

Flight NZ9 from Honolulu to Auckland was aborted during take-off at low speed with 227 passengers on board, the airline said.

Passengers were then taken off the 767-300 aircraft and given hotel rooms for the night.
They were told the plane had suffered engine problems. However, Air New Zealand tonight confirmed a problem with an indication system was to blame.

"The issue was a fault with an indication system which meant it was showing the pilots there was an issue, however there was no fault with the engine itself," a spokeswoman for the airline said.

"Engineers are currently working to repair the indication system."

The flight had been rescheduled to depart at 10pm on Sunday local time [8pm Monday NZT], but that has since been changed to 12.30am on Monday local time [10.30pm on Monday NZT].

Passengers were sent to hotels across Honolulu to spend the night after the flight was aborted. They were tonight back in the airport waiting to board the plane.

During the day some complained of a lack of communication from Air NZ, with one saying they'd had "no updates from anyone", and another saying the cancellation had been "miserably handled".

In response Air NZ said: "Exercise Rimpac, the world's largest military exercise, is currently taking place in Honolulu. The event attracts 25,000 participants so as you can appreciate the customers were distributed across a number of hotels in order to secure the required number of rooms at short notice. This has made communicating with them challenging."

The New Zealand Herald's editor-in-chief Tim Murphy was on board the flight, and tweeted updates about the problems last night.

The take off was aborted "at speed mid-runway", he said, after an indication that the left engine temperature was raised.

"After aborted takeoff, NZ9 Honolulu-Akl now likely cancelled as replacement part to fix engine/indicator light must come from mainland US," he posted.

"After 'scouring Honolulu airport for parts' NZ9 is officially cancelled and with crew needing 10 hour break it's back to the beach for all."

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