An Air Berlin Airbus A330-200, registration D-ALPC performing flight AB-7416 from Dusseldorf (Germany) to Cancun (Mexico), was enroute at FL360 about 120nm northeast of Daytona Beach,FL (USA) when the crew reported smoke in the cockpit and diverted the aircraft to Daytona Beach. The aircraft landed safely on Daytona Beach's runway 25R, vacated the runway, the pilots were talking without oxygen masks once on the ground and taxied the aircraft to a near by stand, where emergency services checked the aircraft.
A passenger reported that the aircraft diverted to Daytona Beach due to smoke in the cockpit, smell of smoke was apparent in the passenger cabin.
The airline reported the captain decided to divert the aircraft to Daytona Beach for safety reasons. The passengers disembarked via stairs. Due to the spring break no hotel accomodation was available in Daytona Beach, the passengers were given accomodation at Daytona Beach Terminal, were provided with meals and access to Internet. The cause of the diversion is being investigated. A replacement aircraft has been dispatched to Daytona Beach, the luggage will be taken to Cancun at a later stage however and taken to the passengers' hotels directly.
An American Airlines Airbus A330-300 registration N271AY was dispatched from Philadelphia to Daytona Beach as flight AA-9462, arrived on Feb 26th 12:08L (17:08Z) and is estimated to depart for the continuation at 13:30L.
According to local information Daytona Beach Airport has no tools available needed to unload an A332, therefore the luggage can not be transferred from the occurrence aircraft to the replacement aircraft. In addition, this weekend is the Daytona 500 race, therefore no accomodation is available in the area.
Passengers were told that the occurrence aircraft is going to be repaired, then is going to carry the luggage to Cancun. The luggage can not be transferred to the replacement aircraft due to lack of needed ground support. Initially the passengers were told their entry to the USA was denied and they therefore could not be taken to hotels. A replacement aircraft would arrive in the course of the night at about 01:00L, however, the flight (AA-9460) was delayed.