A Wizz Air flight last June from Doncaster to London was twice forced to abort take-off because of bugs in the A321 airliner. But not the kind you'd think: according to a just-released safety report, the problem was insect larvae causing a speed sensor to malfunction.
The plane, which had been in storage, but in 'flight-ready' condition due to pandemic shutdowns, was being shuttled to London to resume service. As it approached take-off speed, the pilot noticed that the speed sensor read zero. The take-off was aborted; the same problem happened again.
The plane was then pulled out of service to allow technicians and the British air accident investigation authorities to find the problem, which was considered serious because the pilot must know when the plane reaches take-off speed before lifting off.
The problem was traced to three larvae, each the size of a grain of rice stuck in the intake of the sensor. As a result, there's now a new procedure: Any plane that's been parked for three days or longer must have the pressure lines flushed before being flown.