'There was a huge crash and half the wing was missing!' Passenger from Virgin Atlantic flight to London tells of the moment her aircraft was struck by an Egypt Air jet awaiting take off at JFK
- Egypt Air Boeing 777 to Cairo clipped the London-bound Virgin Atlantic flight
- Pictures taken by passengers show Virgin jet's wing tip being loaded onto truck
- Both planes had to return to terminal at the John F. Kennedy International Airport
A passenger onboard a Virgin Atlantic aircraft which was struck by an Egypt Air jet while awaiting take off at JFK said there was a 'huge crash' with one woman claiming 'half the wing was missing'.
Holidaymaker Vicky Compton, 35, from Newtownabbey, Co Antrim was onboard the Virgin Atlantic aircraft with her mother Margaret Maginnes when the incident happened.?
Ms Compton was filming the take off when the aircraft started to violently shudder.?
The Virgin Atlantic flight to London was delayed after the plane clipped wings with an Egypt Air flight on the runway
The wingtip was carted away in a pickup truck after the collision
She told MailOnline: 'It was very scary. I could hear the engines building up. Then there was a huge almighty crash. The girl on the other side said "half the wing was missing".
‘We took a picture. The Egyptian airways has just clipped us. One of the ground said the Egyptian aircraft had a lower wing. It they had clipped the engine it could have been a major incident.'
After the incident, the Virgin Airways jet was stuck for almost two hours while engineers and ground crew decided on how to deal with the aircraft.?
'Ground staff were getting different information. We were initially offered the chance to fly without our bags. Some people did this. But it was a bit chaotic. Eventually we were towed back to the terminal.?
There were chaotic scenes on the runway after the two planes nearly collided - delaying passengers for several hours
The scare meant both planes had to return to the terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport
The Air Egypt flight had been bound for Cairo
'It took us about two?hours. They made us run through the building to the bus which was going to take us to the hotel. Then we had to run back through the terminal and pick up our bags and then return to the bus.'
According to Ms Compton, her and her mother's room was fine but other passengers had complained about the facilities.
She said her Virgin app updated at 4am local time and told her that she and her mother had been booked on a British Airways flight to London and then onwards to Belfast.?
'The have been great. Some of the people were told they had to fly through Chicago and others through Boston. We are going direct to Heathrow. We were up in Upper Class and there was no panic. We have no fear at all going back on a plane today. It was just one of those things. It takes a lot to scare us. My mum sat and watched a movie. It was quite relaxed.
'I guess it was a bit like getting into a scrape in a supermarket car park. I think ?the other pilot thought he could squeeze through the gap.?
The scare meant both planes had to return to the terminal with some passengers waiting overnight for another flight, and others delayed for some five hours as they tried to get home.
Both planes had been scheduled to leave New York at 6.30pm. Passengers later boarded another flight to London, which departed JFK nearly five hours later, at 11.20pm.
There were no reports of any injuries in the collision at 7.05pm.
Pictures taken by passengers at the scene showed the Virgin jet's wing tip being loaded onto the back of a truck.?
According to the US Federal Aviation Administration, the right wing of the Virgin Atlantic Airlines Flight 4C, an Airbus A333, touched the left wing of EgyptAir Flight 986, a Boeing 777 when both were taxying down the runway.
The Egypt Air flight was bound for Cairo.
Virgin passenger Diana Fleischman posted a photo on Twitter from the scene, adding: 'Was about to fly to London on Virgin Flight VS0004 out of JFK - during taxi to the runway we collided with an aircraft taxiing next to us clipping our left wing - that's the ground crew taking photos of the debris from the other aircraft.
'We're missing the tip of the wing on the left side.'
The right wing of the Virgin Atlantic Airlines Flight 4C, an Airbus A333, touched the left wing of EgyptAir Flight 986, a Boeing 777
Pictures taken by passengers at the scene showed the Virgin jet's wing tip on the runway
'Wingtip...in the back of a truck, unfortunately..' tweeted another passenger, Kevin O'Hara, with a picture of the Virgin Atlantic wingtip in the back of a pick-up truck.?
A Virgin Atlantic spokesman told MailOnline: 'Our VS4 flight from New York to London Heathrow sustained damage to the wingtip whilst taxing to the runway at JFK airport yesterday.
'Safety is always our priority, and all passengers and crew disembarked the aircraft as normal.?
'We're arranging alternate travel for affected customers to enable them to continue their journeys as soon as possible, and we would like to thank them for their understanding during the delay.'
Virgin Atlantic said it had arranged for passengers to get home after the aircraft sustained damage in the collision
Emergency services raced to the scene at JFK Airport following the near-miss
This was not the first time planes have clipped wings on the runway.
In August this year, two Indonesian planes touched wings at the Kualanamu International Airport in Medan, North Sumatra, in Indonesia.
An American Airlines flight heading for Dublin was in a wingtip collision with a Delta plane at JFK the same month and a United Airlines plane clipped a parked Lufthansa jet on the tarmac at Newark Airport in New Jersey in October, 2016.?
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