Investigators are probing the loss of a nose-wheel from a FedEx Boeing MD-11F, apparently during departure from San Antonio.

The aircraft (N619FE) had been operating the FX464 service to Memphis on 7 April.

It landed on runway 18C at about 08:50 but the US FAA, in a preliminary notification, states that the aircraft “lost right nose-gear on departure”.

The notification adds that the trijet sustained “substantial” damage, although it does not clarify whether this extended beyond that to the nose-wheel assembly.

None of the three crew members, the only occupants, was injured.

Cirium fleets data lists N619FE as a 1996 airframe, powered by General Electric CF6 engines, which was originally delivered as a new freighter to FedEx.

While investigators are yet to detail the circumstances of the FedEx incident, inquiries into the loss of a nose-wheel from a Lufthansa Cargo MD-11F at Buenos Aires in November 2016 found a fixing pin had been omitted during maintenance.