A JET2 flight heading home to Leeds Bradford Airport was forced to fly in a circle for two hours above the sea amid fears of a “fault” with the plane.

The ordeal was branded a “nightmare” by one passenger, who described tense scenes including people sweating and children being sick.

Flight LS224 was due to arrive back at the Yeadon airport from Tenerife in the early hours of yesterday morning.

But, it barely made it away from South Tenerife Airport before trouble hit.

There is also an airport in the north of the island, but one of its most popular destinations - Playa de las Américas - is located just a 17-minute drive from the southern airport.

The flight back, which was scheduled to take off at 7:55pm on Sunday evening, was delayed at first.

One source, believed to be on the flight, said it was due to a pressurisation problem with the plane.

They said: “Flight delayed due to pressurisation problem with plane. 

“Got on and took off to find problem was back.” 

It eventually set off at around 8:51pm, just under an hour after it was supposed to.

The plane climbed to around 7,000 feet as the pilot manoeuvred the aircraft out over the Atlantic Ocean.

The aircraft also made its way to a speed of 310 knots per hour.

But after just over 20 minutes of flight-time, the plane was forced to circle near South Tenerife Airport. 

The pilot dropped the speed to fluctuate between 170 and 210 knots per hour.

A spokesperson for Jet2 said: “Flight LS224 from Tenerife to Leeds Bradford returned to Tenerife shortly after take-off, after the pilot reported a minor fault indication.” 

The plane circled in one spot for close to two hours.

One passenger said: “Circled Tenerife for just short of two hours to use fuel, as you can’t land full.”

Another described a small amount of panic on the aircraft.

They said: “Everyone sweating, kids being sick, what a nightmare.”

The pilot made one last circle at 10:26pm, before swinging out wide, further towards the ocean. 

While doing so, the plane began to descend at 10:32pm.

It then landed back at South Tenerife Airport at roughly 10:48pm. 

Yesterday, a spokesperson for Jet2 said: “Customers were provided hotel accommodation and we will be flying them back to Leeds Bradford today.”

One passenger described the hotel as looking “expensive” but admitted the ordeal had left them exhausted.

Local aircraft enthusiast, Ken Cothliff, who published a book charting the 88-year history of Leeds Bradford Airport, in August said the pilot was being “sensible and cautious” in their approach.

He added: “If there’s a problem, it might be an electric problem.

“But the pilot has obviously felt concerned enough to use up the remainder of the fuel.”

Mr Cothliff explained the reason for doing so is to reduce the risk of any potential disasters happening when landing.

He said: “Less fuel on board makes it less likely that there will be a big fire.”

A warning for the pilot could have occurred for a number of reasons, according to Mr Cothliff.

Giving an example of a previous incident, he said: “A Flybe Dash 8 had a problem with its undercarriage.

“It was showing only two green lights out of three and it circled and got rid of fuel.

“It turned out it was just a little bulb that had gone. The public may not be aware of this, but they train for it on simulators. It’s a standard routine thing to do. It’s what the pilots train for.”

The next scheduled Jet2 flight back from Tenerife was on Monday at 2:10pm.

At the time of writing, the plane was halfway back to Leeds-Bradford without any further hitches.

The flight generally takes four hours and 30 minutes.