JB Roche's "Irish tent" to the rescue in Swiss airline emergency
En route from Zurich to Los Angeles, Swiss Flight LX40 was forced to make an emergency landing in remote Canada last week, due to engine failure. The 777-300ER touched down safely in Iqaluit Airport, located in the remote Nunavut region of Canada.
Amidst freezing conditions, the logistical challenge of transporting passengers to their destination - alongside a new engine for the aircraft - began. Official sources state that Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officers at this airport have only small general aviation aircraft capacity, for more than 15 passengers. The large Boeing 777-300 can carry up to 550 passengers.
As a response to the unplanned landing, Swiss airline dispatched a flight from JFK, New York to pick up the passengers. A new GE Aviation Engine and 12 GE technicians departed Zurich on an Antonov An 124 aircraft - facing high winds, -40F wind chill and no hanger large enough for the 777. This is where Co. Cork based JB Roche, an Enterprise Ireland client company, stepped in: their inflatable on-wing engine hanger was aboard the Antonov 124. Designed to withstand extreme environments, the hangar has been thus described as a "game changer that performed superbly and allowed our technicians to perform what would otherwise have been impossible." Take a look at the incident documented here.