A Dutch Airforce aircraft, an A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT), has recently been involved in an unfortunate incident. As per the report released by NATO regarding its tanker, the jet made an emergency landing at Eindhoven Airport in the Netherlands following a bizarre incident. The refueling hose of the jet allegedly failed to pull back, which put the pilot in a distressing situation. The crew of the aircraft highlighted the problem with the hose after 1:30 pm, according to local time. One of the spectators captured the video of the event when the aircraft was making an emergency landing at the airport with its suspended hose.
It has to be noted that the pilot continued a circling approach for about an hour before he actually landed at the airport. Moreover, during the approach, he also contacted the ATC tower and asked, “Do we have to declare an emergency or something with you?” Regarding the unclosed hose, the pilot further asked the ATC, “How low would you like us to go to check the drogue?” To which the tower replied, “Five hundred feet.” The video is embedded below for the detailed conversation between the pilot and ATC:
However, as soon as the airplane landed, one of the runway lights was damaged as well. Not only this, but the landing also left metal debris behind the aircraft. Most of the landings carried out by the NATO tankers have been carried out at this airport, and NATO ordered the first unit out of the nine aircraft (Airbus A330 MRTT) in June 2020 during a ceremony in Spain. According to NATO, these fleets serve major operations both nationally and internationally, and further said, “These state-of-the-art aircraft are configured for a variety of missions, from air-to-air refueling (both boom and hose and drogue) to troop transport, VIP transport, cargo/freight transport, and they can also be re-configured for aeromedical evacuation.”
As a matter of fact, no further details have been shared by the authorities yet, so we cannot exactly declare what type of occurrences caused the incident and what happened with the receiver aircraft. There might be some possible errors with the receiver aircraft that led to the possible damage of the refueling hose that didn’t retract. Till then, let’s wait for the authorities to release details about the investigations conducted so far.