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Boeing 747 cargo plane makes emergency landing in Miami

An Atlas Air Boeing 747 cargo plane made an emergency return to Miami International Airport following an engine problem shortly after takeoff, the airline said — prompting another investigation into the company’s safety protocols. The plane landed safely late Thursday “after experiencing an engine malfunction soon after departure,” an Atlas Air spokesperson told AFP in a statement. No injuries were reported. “The crew followed all standard procedures and safely returned to MIA,” the spokesperson said, adding that the airline would investigate the cause of the incident. A post-flight inspection “revealed a softball-size hole” above an engine, said the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The National Transportation Safety Board told AFP that it has opened an investigation into the case, and is collecting information to determine the scope of the probe. Boeing said in a separate statement that it is supporting its customers and will aid with the NTSB review. The plane uses four engines made by GE Aerospace, which is also providing technical assistance as investigations proceed. The US aviation giant is under intense global scrutiny over its 737 MAX 9 jet, following a scare on an Alaska Airlines plane this month when a panel came off mid-flight and forced an emergency landing. There were no fatalities or serious injuries in that case either, but US regulators have grounded 171 737 MAX 9 planes with the same configuration as the jet involved in the incident. Boeing shares took a hit, with the FAA launching a safety probe into the earlier incident this month too. It was the first major in-flight safety issue on a Boeing plane since fatal 2018 and 2019 737 MAX crashes that led to a nearly two-year grounding of the aircraft. While US air safety regulators have completed inspections on 40 grounded 737 MAX planes, they have not specified when the aircraft would return to service.

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