An American Airlines plane not certified to travel long distances was flown from Los Angeles to Hawaii on 31 August, the airline has confirmed. The mix-up happened when an A321S plane equipped with less safety and medical equipment, was used instead of a A321H.

Both planes have the same basic safety features, however the A321H plane is better kitted out for longer flights since it has extra safety features, like fire suppression.

Speaking to BBC News, American Airlines spokesman Casey Norton said: "Whether the plane was going to make it there was never a question.

"We're reviewing our procedures and looking at everyone involved."

Despite the A321S plane arriving safely in Hawaii, investigations are ongoing to determine how the mix-up happened. Norton said "someone on the ground" had identified the mix-up after the flight departed the LAX airport on 31 August, reported CNN News.

Both the flight crew and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) were informed before it was decided that the flight should continue on its journey towards Honolulu in Hawaii. Norton further said that the airline has updated its software to ensure the "correct aircraft are operating the correct routes."

"Somebody screwed up big-time, somewhere," an unidentified American Airlines pilot told CNN News. "All [extended operation] related equipment must be certified and be operational before a plane is cleared to fly. That means everything from oil quantities, to crew oxygen quantities, to retardants -- they all have to be looked at.

"All I can say is, thank God they didn't have an emergency on that flight."