Cathay Pacific has admitted that both engines on the Airbus A330-300 which carried out a high-speed landing at Hong Kong yesterday had experienced problems.

Flight-data analysis shows the right-hand Rolls-Royce Trent 700 powerplant had been at idle thrust during the entire approach while thrust on the left-hand engine had "frozen" at 70% of maximum.

This higher thrust setting on the left-hand engine resulted in a landing at 230kt, with an incorrect flap configuration.

The high-speed landing led six of the aircraft’s tyres to deflate and, after receiving indications of flames from the heated landing-gear, the crew ordered an evacuation of the aircraft via the slides.

Cathay had previous stated that one engine had been shut down during the approach, but that the other was "functioning" – with no indication of any problems.

The airline clarifies today that "at no time" were both engines shut down in flight.

Maintenance support manager Dennis Hui says the aircraft would normally have touched down at 135kt.

Flight CX780 from Surabaya, Indonesia, landed in the correct runway position, he says: "But due to its high speed, it had to brake hard and use reverse thrust from the operating engine."

Cathay Pacific says it is co-operating with the Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department, Rolls-Royce and Airbus to establish the reasons for the powerplant problems.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news