Plane’s Emergency Landing Prompted by 2,000 Flatulent Sheep



airplane interiorWell, this flight crew must be feeling sheepish.

The Aviation Herald reported an incident involving a Singapore Airlines Boeing 747-400 freighter flying from Sydney, Australia, to Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, which led to an unexpected stop in Bali Denpasar, Indonesia on Oct. 26.

While the flight was en route, flying just south of Denpasar, Indonesia, the smoke warning signal came on for the plane’s cargo hold, causing crews to divert the flight for an emergency landing.

Upon arrival in Bali Denpasar 45 minutes later, emergency services investigated the cargo and didn’t find any trace of fire, heat, or smoke, according to the report.

But the flight wasn’t just carrying any cargo. On-board were 2,186 sheep, which authorities believe were responsible for setting off the smoke detector.

How? The signal was thought to have gone off because of the “exhausted gasses and manure” the sheep produced, according to the Aviation Herald’s report.

Thankfully, this wasn’t one of the millions of commercial flights each year transporting humans rather than animals.

According to, there are an estimated 100,000 flights globally each day, including both cargo and passenger travel. Those flights carry everything from packages being mailed across the globe to families heading to their favorite vacation resorts or camping spots, the latter of which are part of a $15 billion industry.

A spokesperson from Singapore Airlines gave a statement to the The Daily Mail, saying, “On 26 October 2015, a Singapore Airlines Cargo Boeing 747 freighter aircraft carrying a shipment of [sheep], operating as SQ7108 from Adelaide to Kuala Lumpur diverted to Bali after the crew received a warning from the onboard fire alarm system.”

Although Singapore Airlines wouldn’t admit whether animal flatulence had actually caused the landing, they did go on to say, “Inspections were carried out on the ground and the aircraft was certified serviceable.”

Thankfully, the aircraft was able to depart once more after spending two-and-a-half hours grounded in Denpasar. The flight reached its destination without any other incidents.

“It’s unclear what is going to happen to these sheep in Malaysia,” a report on concluded, “but we can only hope their new owner gives them better food.”

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