• Staff Report


A Skymark Airlines jet was forced to make an emergency landing in Hokkaido early Monday morning after a passenger’s portable battery for recharging smartphones started emitting smoke, NHK reported, quoting transport ministry officials.

Flight 732, which had left New Chitose Airport near Sapporo bound for Haneda in Tokyo, returned to New Chitose after 15 minutes for an emergency landing. Its 170 passengers were not hurt, NHK said.

However, two flight attendants who tried to extinguish the smoke sustained slight burns to their hands after the heated battery exploded and spread liquid, according to the report.

The Skymark flight returned to New Chitose at around 12:45 a.m.

The female passenger who had the battery was quoted as telling NHK that she heard a bang after the aircraft finished its initial ascent. Then the battery, which was in a bag and placed under the seat in front, began spewing white smoke.

A bad smell filled the cabin, and passengers were thrown into panic, according to NHK.

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