A China Eastern Airbus A321-200, registration B-6592 performing flight MU-2371 (dep Feb 22nd) from Shanghai Hongqiao to Haikou (China), was on approach to Haikou at about 01:12L (17:12Z Feb 22nd) when the crew needed to go around from decision height being unable to establish visual contact with the runway.
The crew subsequently decided to divert to one of their filed alternate airports Sanya located 115nm southsouthwest of Haikou, Guangzhou located 250nm northnortheast of Haikou or Shenzhen located 250nm northeast of Haikou. Believing that their preferred alternate Shenzhen was not available the crew opted to divert to Guangzhou. While on approach to Guangzhou, about 48 minutes after the first go-around, the crew needed to go-around in Guangzhou, too, declared emergency and decided to divert to Shenzhen, located about 45nm southsoutheast of Guangzhou. The aircraft eventually landed safely in Shenzhen with 2.6 tons of fuel remaining, above required final fuel reserve, about one hour after the go-around in Haikou.

All three alternate airports were said to have refused to accept the aircraft causing outrage in Chinese media.

Sanya Airport clarified that they would have accepted the aircraft, suitable weather conditions existed at that time. It was the choice of the crew however where they diverted to, and the aircraft never headed towards Sanya.

Guangzhou Airport reported that they were ready to accept the aircraft, however were at the edge of a weather front. At the time the aircraft set course towards Guangzhou until the estimated time of arrival at 01:52L the weather conditions permitted a landing. However, the aircraft was on final approach to Guangzhou only at 02:00L, in those 8 minutes the weather conditions had rapidly deteriorated forcing the crew to go-around.

Shenzhen’s Air Traffic Control reported that Shenzhen Airport had received a high number of weather related diversions and all parking stands were in use already, so that any new unscheduled arrival would have needed to park on taxiways. The airport had therefore transmitted that the airport would no longer accept "non-emergency alternates". A trainee controller communicated this notification to the crew of MU-2371, it is possible that a misunderstanding arose creating the impression with the crew that Shenzhen was not available at all and thus left them with the choice of Sanya and Guangzhou. The airport did not hesitate to accept the aircraft upon second request (editorial note: which was the emergency declaration).

China’s Civil Aviation Authority is investigating the occurrence. Sources within the CAAC indicated initial findings give reason to be critical of all three alternate airports, but suggest the primary cause was Shenzhen causing the confusion and raising the impression the airport was not available though the airport was suitable and preferred by the crew.

Metars Haikou:
ZJHK 221800Z 00000MPS 0050 R09/0225N FG VV001 18/18 Q1007 NOSIG
ZJHK 221700Z 36001MPS 0600 R09/0600 FG VV002 18/18 Q1008 BECMG 0400 FG VV001 
ZJHK 221600Z 26001MPS 1800 R09/0600 BCFG BR SKC 18/18 Q1007 BECMG 1200 BR
ZJHK 221500Z 27001MPS 1600 R09/0650 BCFG BR SKC 17/17 Q1007 BECMG 1200 BR
ZJHK 221400Z 19001MPS 1600 BR SCT007 18/18 Q1007 BECMG 1200 BR
ZJHK 221300Z 19001MPS 1100 R09/P2000 BR BKN004 OVC020 18/18 Q1007 BECMG 1600 BR BKN005 BKN020
Metars Guangzhou:
ZGGG 221800Z 00000MPS 0400 R02R/0450V0600N R02L/0450N -RA FG BKN004 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 BECMG TL1930 0300 -RA FG BKN002 OVC020
ZGGG 221730Z 00000MPS 0500 R02R/0600V0750D R02L/0900V1100U FG BKN004 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 NOSIG
ZGGG 221700Z 00000MPS 0500 R02R/0750N R02L/0800V0900N -RA FG BKN004 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 NOSIG
ZGGG 221630Z 00000MPS 0700 R02R/0900V1100N R02L/1600U -RA FG FEW002 BKN004 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 NOSIG
ZGGG 221600Z 05001MPS 0500 R02R/0600N R02L/1800N -RA FG BKN004 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 NOSIG
ZGGG 221530Z 00000MPS 0600 R02R/0800N R02L/1300U -RA FG BKN004 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 NOSIG
ZGGG 221500Z 05001MPS 0700 R02R/0800V0900N R02L/1900U FG BKN006 OVC020 20/19 Q1010 NOSIG
ZGGG 221430Z 01001MPS 0700 R02R/0900V1000N R02L/P2000 FG BKN003 OVC020 20/19 Q1009 NOSIG
ZGGG 221400Z 01002MPS 0600 R02R/0800V0900N R02L/P2000 -RA FG BKN003 OVC020 20/19 Q1009 NOSIG
Metars Shenzhen: 
ZGSZ 221900Z 32002MPS 2000 -RA BR SCT015 OVC023 19/17 Q1009 BECMG 1200 BR
ZGSZ 221800Z VRB01MPS 3200 BR SCT015 OVC030 20/18 Q1009 NOSIG 
ZGSZ 221700Z 12002MPS 7000 SCT017 OVC033 22/19 Q1009 NOSIG
ZGSZ 221600Z 11003MPS 7000 SCT017 OVC033 21/19 Q1009 NOSIG
ZGSZ 221500Z 12003MPS 3200 BR SCT015 OVC030 21/19 Q1009 NOSIG
ZGSZ 221400Z 12003MPS 080V160 4800 BR SCT013 OVC030 22/19 Q1009 NOSIG
Metars Sanya: 
ZJSY 221800Z 05003MPS 9999 SCT043 24/21 Q1008 NOSIG
ZJSY 221700Z 05002MPS 360V080 CAVOK 24/21 Q1008 NOSIG ZJSY 221600Z 07003MPS CAVOK 24/21 Q1008 NOSIG
ZJSY 221500Z 08003MPS CAVOK 23/21 Q1008 NOSIG
ZJSY 221400Z 08003MPS CAVOK 24/21 Q1008 NOSIG
ZJSY 221300Z 11002MPS CAVOK 24/22 Q1008 NOSIG 
SOURCE: avherald.com
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