SMOKE appeared in the cockpit of an easyJet flight due to an electrical fault which was known to the aircraft manufacturer, an investigation found.

EasyJet was unaware that 10 similar failures had been reported previously, according to the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB).

The captain and co-pilot became aware of smoke and fumes 11 minutes after taking off from Edinburgh with 172 passengers on board.

Loading article content

They were forced to don their oxygen masks, issue a mayday alert and divert the Airbus A320 to Newcastle.

The source of the smoke was traced to an overheated device which converts voltage in the cockpit, the AAIB found.

Airbus did transmit warnings about the problem but they were in a format used for “information” rather than “instructions” and were not routinely reviewed by easyJet.

Both the aircraft manufacturer and airline “intend further safety action”.

There was also a three-minute delay in the co-pilot speaking to cabin crew due to difficulties with the aircraft’s phone system.

The incident occurred on flight EZY6931 from Edinburgh to Hamburg, Germany, on November 28 last year. It landed safely in Newcastle and the passengers were able to disembark normally.