A Virgin Atlantic plane was forced to go back to Heathrow due to one of its pilots being not properly trained.
The plane, which was headed towards New York, was 40 minutes into its journey on Monday when the personnel realised there had been a “rostering error” which put a not fully qualified pilot on the flight.
The first officer, who had joined the company in 2017, was legally qualified under UK laws but did not complete a final flight assessment required by Virgin Atlantic.
According to the airline, the flight’s safety was not compromised and after a replacement was found, the aircraft departed again.
“Due to a rostering error, flight VS3 from London Heathrow to New York-JFK returned to Heathrow on Monday 2nd May shortly after take-off,” said an airline spokesperson.
“The qualified first officer, who was flying alongside an experienced captain, was replaced with a new pilot to ensure full compliance with Virgin Atlantic’s training protocols, which exceed industry standards.
“We apologise for any inconvenience caused to our customers, who arrived two hours and 40 minutes later than scheduled as a result of the crew change.”
The UK’s aviation watchdog, the Civil Aviation Authority, said it had been made aware of the mistake.