BRA Airline Emergency Landing: Pilots unable to handle Wing Ice Buildup

Swedish domestic carrier BRA airline (Braathens Regional Airlines) performed an emergency landing today. The plane was unable to continue the flight due to wing de-icing difficulties.

The BRA-flight took off from Stockholm’s Bromma Airport headed for Ängelholm Airport 545 kilometers (339 miles) away. Arlanda is Stockholm’s main airport, while Bromma is a regional airport. The airplane made an emergency landing at Stockholm’s Skavsta Airport, another regional Stockholm airport.

Flightaware flight path BRA airlines emergency landing
The BRA flight’s flight path is shown on this FlightAware screenshot.

However, trouble began 20 minutes after departure. After that, the captain informed the passengers that an emergency landing had become necessary.

The pilots, flight attendants, and the passengers all handled the situation well, according to different sources.

Difficulty controlling the airplane

Sara Jönsson, a spokesperson for the Swedish Sea and Airplane Rescue unit said that the pilots had difficulty controlling the airplane once the ice buildup became uncontained.

Jönsson continued to say that no one was hurt. Fortunately, the emergency landing was completed with no further complications.

Anna Soltorp, BRA’s spokesperson confirmed that Braathens Regional Airlines had made an emergency landing at Stockholm’s Skavsta Airport.

The plane had experienced an ice buildup on the wings. With the de-ice system not able to shed the ice as designed, the plane descended to warmer air. Then, the plane made the emergency landing at Skavsta Airport.

Soltorp said the passengers were well taken care of after landing. Later reports confirmed that the passengers continued on to their Ängelholm Airport destination, through an arrangement by BRA.

Passenger vlog of his experiences with BRA airline. Video: YouTube.

Cause of emergency landing: Wing de-ice problems

A commercial airliner is equipped to handle ice-buildup on the wings. Briefly explained:

Airplane anti-ice system

The anti-ice system is used to prevent ice buildup to form on the wings’ leading edges (front of each wing).

Airplane de-ice system

The de-ice system is used to remove ice buildup that has already formed.

Passenger account of what happened during BRA airline’s emergency landing

Hans Averier was a passenger on board. He said he noticed how the forward flight attendant was summoned to talk with the rear flight attendant in a real hurry. At that time he started noticing the engines revving up repeatedly, with the airplane shaking. Before touchdown, the passengers were instructed to initiate the “brace for impact” position. The airplane had descended very fast. The touchdown was hard.

Averiers’ personal account of the experience was that of “feeling very difficult” for the first five minutes after the emergency started. His whole life had “passed in review”, wondering what would unfold next.

BRA airline emergency landing
A BRA regional jet. Photo: Braathens Regional Airlines (BRA).

What is the “brace for impact” position?

Airline crew will command the brace for impact-procedure as a precautionary measure during situations where a landing has the potential for going wrong.

The position passengers need to be in involves a forward bending of the body with the head forward or even between the legs.

BRA airline

Just an interesting note for English-speaking people unfamiliar with the airline. The first mention of the acronym “BRA” naturally create some innocent, yet humorous comments, as stated in the video earlier in the article.

Although “bra” in English refers to a female piece of clothing, in Swedish, Norwegian, and Danish the word means “good”. Now, thinking in Scandinavian terms, “BRA” airlines should perhaps make the Scandinavians associate this Swedish domestic airline as “good”?

Sources: Swedish newspaper Expressen & Lasse Persson for

Featured Image: Braathens Regional Airlines (BRA)

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