Malaysia Airlines Flight Turns Back After Auto-Pilot Defect

A Malaysia Airlines flight bound for the Indian city of Hyderabad yesterday turned back to Kuala Lumpur after an auto-pilot defect.

The operating captain of MH198 decided to head back to Kuala Lumpur as a precautionary measure even though the defect wouldn’t have had any impact on the safety of the aircraft or passengers, Malaysian Airline System Bhd. said in a statement today. Claims on social media that the aircraft was on fire were untrue, the carrier said.

The operations of Malaysia Airlines are under global scrutiny after two high-profile disasters this year. Flight MH370 with 239 people on board went missing in March and a multination search hasn’t found the plane, while MH17 was shot down over Ukraine in July, killing all 298 people on board.

MH198 left for Hyderabad at 10:20 p.m. before turning back and landing at Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 2:01 a.m. “uneventfully,” the company said. The rescheduled flight was due to depart at noon local time today, it said.

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