Several hours after departing Sydney, flight AC34 began to bank and the captain's voice came on the tinny intercom, usually not a good sign so deep into a transoceanic flight. Passengers and crew had discovered an acrid, burning smell coming from one of the business class washrooms. Now that they mentioned it, I noticed the sharp, electrical odor. Our next stop was clearly not going to be Vancouver. The captain continued to say the closest airport that could handle a Boeing 777-233(LR) was Fiji, about an hour back along our route. As a frequent business traveller, I'm not typically fond of deviations from plan, but this had the element of novelty.
The detour to Fiji seemed interminable. I wasn't overly concerned in terms of safety, but when your ride is smoldering at 35,000 feet you don't have the consolation of terra firma. However, we landed at Nadi International Airport without further incident at 5:49 pm local time on June 16th, 2013.
|A couple screen captures of AC34 landing in Nadi from Youtube. A short video can be found here, posted by BonnieBula. Don't expect any fireworks.|