A Rex 737 is returning to service after declaring an emergency and landing at Melbourne Airport late this morning.
The eight-year-old Boeing 737-800 (pictured), registered as VH-MFM, landed at 11:23am this morning as flight ZL-37 from Sydney after smoke was reported from the aft lavatory, according to a spokesperson for the airline.
“The crew were able to isolate the problem by following standard operating procedures. The aircraft, a Boeing 737-800NG, had 146 passengers on board all of whom disembarked normally once the aircraft had taxied to the gate,” the spokesperson said.
“Rex engineers have identified the cause of the smoke and rectified the problem. The aircraft is now serviceable and will resume operations this afternoon.”
The flight was greeted by emergency services, including fire crews, which were ultimately not needed, according to a statement from Melbourne Airport.
“As per Melbourne Airport Emergency Plan, Emergency services were activated and attended. The plane landed without incident and taxied to the bay,” the airport told the Daily Mail.
Not really sure, I can’t see police only fire trucks pic.twitter.com/A25cyxb5tk
— Courto 🤙 (@courtneyyhudson) April 11, 2023
Rex took delivery of the plane – its seventh – in August last year, in order to add capacity to the Sydney-Melbourne-Brisbane “Golden Triangle” routes. It was previously leased to Samoa Airways under the registration number 2-WTFL.
Last year, Rex said it could even expand its 737 fleet to 30 over the coming five to seven years, with an aim to enter one new plane into service every two to three months.
Rex launched its first 737 flights between major cities in March 2021 and has since expanded its network to include flights between Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, the Gold Coast, and Canberra.