A Qantas flight, QF2, travelling from Dubai to Sydney on Sunday, December 7, was forced to make an emergency landing in Perth after it developed a fault with the cabin air conditioning, the airline said in a statement.
The fault occurred about one hour from Perth.
As a precaution and to maintain the conditions of the cabin, the captain descended the aircraft from 39,000 to 10,000 feet and requested a priority landing.
The controlled descent took approximately five minutes and was announced by the captain to passengers and cabin crew, Qantas said.
A passenger, Nigel Richardson, tweeted: “Fastest descent I’ve ever experienced in a plane. Always interesting when you see cabin crew running too.”
However, Captain Mike Galvin, Qantas head of Flying Operations asserted that safety was not compromised.
“It’s standard procedure to descend quickly in these circumstances and at no stage was the safety of the aircraft or passengers at risk.”
The aircraft landed safely in Perth at 1:18am local time and was inspected by engineers, the statement added.
As the crew reached their maximum duty limits before the issue could be fixed on the ground, customers were provided with overnight accommodation.
Some customers were booked on scheduled Qantas services to Sydney on Monday morning, with the majority departing on an extra B747 flight that Qantas operates at 2:30pm.