News State Queensland Turtle stops Jetstar plane on Gold Coast runway

Turtle stops Jetstar plane on Gold Coast runway

Hale and hearty, the turtles have returned to their watery world. Photo: Getty
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A troublesome turtle has brought a passenger plane to a grinding halt when it went for a wander on the runway at Gold Coast Airport.

Jetstar pilot James Fuller had to hit the brakes after the reptile got too close for comfort as the plane was taxiing ahead of take-off on Thursday night.

Fearing the turtle could be sucked into the plane’s right engine, the pilot radioed the control tower for help, only to be told it was not the animal’s first offence.

“They said he’d been up there earlier in the day as well. It was the second time they’d had to move him,” Mr Fuller has told the ABC.

Jetstar passenger Lachlan Burnet said it made his day that the pilots halted the hulking aircraft to make way for the little critter.

“(They) brought the plane to a stop for a few minutes … to allow a gorgeous little turtle to cross the taxiway in front of the aircraft and make his way (yes, slowly – give him a break … it’s a turtle!) to the creek near the airport fence,” he posted on Twitter.

“Lovely stuff … well played.”

A safety car was later sent out to remove the turtle, and pilots at the airport are on the alert in case it returns.