Sunday September 14, 2014
07:11 AM GMT+8

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A screengrab from Flightradar24’s Twitter feed showing MAS flight MH198's forced u-turn. A screengrab from Flightradar24’s Twitter feed showing MAS flight MH198's forced u-turn.

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 14 — Malaysian Airlines (MAS) flight MH198 from Kuala Lumpur to Hyderabad, India was forced to turn back and made an emergency landing at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport shortly after its departure last night after its crew detected a problem, global flight tracking agency Flightradar24 tweeted.

The Boeing 738 plane, which took off at 10.20pm last night, landed without incident at 2.01am today, MAS said in a statement posted on its website.

The national carrier attributed the cause for the turnback to a "technical problem" but did not go into specifics.

"The defect did not have any impact on the safety of the aircraft or passengers, however as a precautionary measure, the operating Captain decided to turn back," MAS said.

It added that the passengers aboard disembarked safely and have been provided with accommodation at hotels nearby the airport.

It also said Flight MH198 has been rescheduled to operate as MH198D and will leave the city at 12 noon today. The rescheduled flight is expected to land in for Hyderabad at 1.35pm local time today.

News of the unexpected emergency landing was first reported by Flightradar24, which said the plane started maintaining a holding position shortly after take-off and burnt fuel to prepare for an emergency landing.

"Yeah I was on #MH198 apparently some issues with their radio & they had to land manually after burning out fuel," a Twitter user posted on the microblogging site under the handle ‏@im_not_sana.

The late night incident follows two air disasters for MAS this year, the first being the mysterious disappearance of Flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8.

More recently was the shooting down of Flight MH17 over Ukraine on July 17, killing all 298 people on board.

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