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Report: Serious oven smoke incident involving Fokker 100
1 September 2015
File photo of  Fokker 100 HB-JVH, approaching Zurich in April 2013 (photo: Hansueli Krapf / CC:by-sa)

File photo of Fokker 100 HB-JVH, approaching Zurich in April 2013 (photo: Hansueli Krapf / CC:by-sa)

The Swiss Transportation Safety investigation Board published an investigation report, detailing a serious smoke incident involving an oven on board a Fokker 100 passenger plane.

On July 15, 2013, a Fokker 100, registration HB-JVH, took off from runway 28 in Zurich, Switzerland on a scheduled flight to Bristol, U.K. While climbing, just after the oven used to heat food had been turned on, the senior cabin attendant (SCA), who was working in the galley towards the front of the aircraft, discovered smoke coming from oven no. 2. When he opened the door of the affected oven he was confronted by a cloud of smoke. He then turned this oven and all other galley equipment off.
At the same time the flight crew had noted that white smoke was entering the right side of the cockpit from the rear. The attendant was then instructed by the flight crew to pull the oven circuit breaker. This interrupted the power supply to the oven and smoke generation ceased.
The flight crew then  decided to fly back to Zurich.
A safe landing was carried out 37 minutes after takeoff. The flight crew decided to let passengers disembark normally since no further smoke was visible.
No occupants were injured. An oven on board the aircraft was damaged. There was no other damage.

The serious incident is attributable to smoke generation during the flight. This was due to the fact that an exposed heating element came into contact with a plastic film in an oven.
The following factors were identified as the direct cause:

  • A plastic film was mistakenly left in the oven.
  • The oven was switched on with an inappropriate tray rack without a rear panel

The following factor was identified as the systemic cause:

  • The persons concerned were not aware that two oven types requiring different tray racks were in use.Although the following factor did not directly cause the serious incident, in the context of the investigation it was identified as a risk factor:
  • The principles for combating smoke generation or a fire in the oven were not followed.
  • The flight crew and the fire brigade were only able to communicate by calling because they were not on a common radio frequency.

More information: