Oops: TUI Boeing 737 Diverts Twice In One Day

Oops: TUI Boeing 737 Diverts Twice In One Day

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It’s not unusual to see commercial planes divert due to technical or maintenance issues. However, the same plane diverting twice in one day? That’s something you don’t see often.

TUI Boeing 737 returns to Brussels twice the same day

On Monday, August 8, 2022, the same Boeing 737 diverted twice due to technical issues. For context, both of these incidents involve TUI fly Belgium, which is a Belgian low cost carrier and charter operator.

The airline operates a fleet of 30 aircraft, including everything from Boeing 737s to Boeing 787s. In this case we’re focusing specifically on a 15-year-old Boeing 737-800 with the registration code OO-JAF, as this plane didn’t have a good day yesterday.

TUI flight to Rhodes returns to Brussels

The first incident involves TUI fly Belgium flight TB2341, which was scheduled to fly from Brussels (BRU) to Rhodes, Greece (RHO). The plane took off for the 1,537-mile journey around 6:30AM as scheduled, and climbed all the way up to 36,000 feet.

However, about 45 minutes after takeoff, the crew made the decision to return to Brussels due to a technical issue. The plane ended up landing back in Brussels around 1hr45min after it departed.

The airline found a replacement aircraft, and after a 3hr20min flight, passengers arrived in Rhodes a bit after 5PM, nearly six hours behind schedule. That’s probably not how most people were hoping to start their Greek holiday, but at least they got there same day, and would also be entitled to EU261 compensation.

The first time the TUI Boeing 737 returned to Brussels

TUI flight to Tirana returns to Brussels

Unfortunately for TUI fly Belgium passengers, that wasn’t the only incident of the day. I guess TUI decided that it had figured out whatever issue there was with the 737, so the plane operated another flight later that day.

The second incident involves TUI fly Belgium flight TB2951, which was scheduled to fly from Brussels (BRU) to Tirana, Albania (TIA). The plane took off for the 978-mile journey around 6:00PM as scheduled, and climbed up to 37,000 feet.

However, about 40 minutes after takeoff, the crew made the decision to return to Brussels due to (once again) a technical issue. The plane ended up landing back in Brussels around 1hr30min after it departed. As you can see below, the flight path was almost identical to that of the first one.

The airline ended up finding a replacement aircraft, and after a 2hr5min flight, passengers arrived in Tirana a bit after 2:40AM, over seven hours behind schedule. Ouch.

The second time the TUI Boeing 737 returned to Brussels

Bottom line

It goes without saying that planes sometimes have technical and mechanical issues that require diversions. However, it’s not often you hear of the same plane diverting twice in one day. Even beyond that, it’s pretty remarkable that the plane turned around in nearly the same spot on both flights.

We don’t have knowledge of what the technical issues were, though it seems more likely than not that the problems were linked, and just weren’t fixed correctly the first time around.

What do you make of this TUI incident?

(Tip of the hat to aviation24.be, featured image courtesy of Jeroen Stroes Aviation Photography)

Conversations (4)
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  1. CharlieG Guest

    Engineers who have to fly the plane after they fix it tend to do a better job than those who just 'fix' but don't fly. The requirement was brought in by the RAF during WW2 to save the lives of the few trained fighter pilots it had.

  2. T- Guest

    Ground it Charlie! This plane needs a check-up! Again.

  3. Joseph Guest

    Looks like a twilight zone moment lol

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The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

CharlieG Guest

Engineers who have to fly the plane after they fix it tend to do a better job than those who just 'fix' but don't fly. The requirement was brought in by the RAF during WW2 to save the lives of the few trained fighter pilots it had.

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T- Guest

Ground it Charlie! This plane needs a check-up! Again.

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Joseph Guest

Looks like a twilight zone moment lol

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