A British Airways flight from Aberdeen to London was delayed for almost two hours after a traffic cone became wedged beneath the aircraft.
Engineers could remove the offending item to inspect the damage only by disembarking all the passengers and luggage in an incident that had crew members scratching their heads.
Passenger Claire Buckley said the captain “sounded genuinely stunned” that it could have happened as he gave them updates.
They were eventually told the “skin” of the aircraft had not been pierced, a dent made by the cone had “popped back out” and the flight had been cleared to head to Heathrow.
A spokeswoman for British Airways said: “The safety of our customers and crew is always our top priority.
“Our highly-trained engineers inspected the aircraft before it continued on its journey.
“We are sorry for the delay to customers’ travel plans.”