A Qantas aircrew (and passengers) rediscover the old axiom that it’s better to be lucky than good. Though it helps if you have an ample supply of both.
LEAKING water knocked out electricity to a number of systems during a Qantas 747’s flight to Bangkok, forcing the crew to land using limited battery power in a race against the clock.
…As a result of the leak many of the aircraft‘s communication, navigation, monitoring and warning, and flight guidance systems were affected.
Had the event occurred more than 30 minutes flying time from the nearest suitable airport, or if there had been a delay prior to landing, numerous flight-critical systems would have become unavailable, placing the flight at “considerable” risk, air safety investigators warned.
— Schneider, Kate. “Qantas jet’s ‘lucky escape’ after water leak.” News.com.au, 13 December 2010.
The plane had a 30-minute battery reserve powering the avionics bay, and they landed having used 21 minutes of it.