updated 4/3/2009 7:04:59 AM ET 2009-04-03T11:04:59

A Virgin Blue jet was hit several times by lightning just after takeoff and returned to the Melbourne airport for an emergency landing.

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An airport spokeswoman said no one was injured in the Friday afternoon incident.

The 737 jet was just 10 minutes into its journey to Tasmania when it was hit. The plane was carrying 117 passengers and six crew. It immediately turned around and made an emergency landing.

The spokeswoman said the plane was taken out of service for an engineering inspection.

No other details were immediately available. Virgin Blue did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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