A plane carrying Vice President Dan Quayle touched down safely Saturday in the Australian resort city of Cairns after a warning light falsely indicated a possible engine fire, a spokesman said.
In Washington, Craig Whitney, Quayle’s deputy press secretary, said the pilot of the Boeing 707 airliner dubbed Air Force Two received what proved to be a false signal that one of its engines was on fire.
“The pilots noticed what is referred to as the ‘fire light’ flickering--all it did was flicker--while en route from Sidney to Cairns,” Whitney said. He said that upon landing, they “checked out the problem and found no fire.”
He said they examined the engine, the wiring and the aircraft and concluded that the “plane was in fine condition.” He said they were unable to determine what caused the flickering. “It’s just something that happened.”
Quayle later traveled on to Port Douglas, 35 miles north of Cairns on Australia’s northeast coast, where he will wind up the first leg of his Asian swing with a visit to the Great Barrier Reef.