‘We thought it is the end of our lives’
SCARY PASSENGERS IN OBLIVION FOR 2 HRS
Srinagar, May 24: “We thought it is the end of our lives.” These were the remarks of the passengers on board the Srinagar-bound SpiceJet flight, which made an emergency landing at the Delhi airport on Monday afternoon.
The passengers, who spoke to Greater Kashmir on their arrival here this evening, said the flight crew kept them in oblivion for over an hour before the flight, SG224, made the emergency landing at the IGI airport. “We just kept screaming before the airhostesses, asking them about the cause of return to Delhi from Udhampur. Near Udhampur, we were told that there is some technical fault,” they said.
When the flight returned to Delhi, it hovered in the air for over 45 minutes, causing further panic among the passengers. “The chaos and confusion inside the flight made things worse. Instead of mitigating the panic, the crew compounded it by not informing us anything about the cause of return,” they said.
The aircraft made an emergency landing after the Air Traffic Control informed the pilot that “some pieces of the flight tyre had fallen on the runway.”
The 188-passengers on board were safe, only after experiencing a “horrific trauma” inside the flight. “There was a complete pandemonium inside the plane and every body was screaming. We should have been at least informed about the emergency landing. We thought it is the end of our life.”
The passengers said the plane hovered more than 45 minutes after returning to Delhi before making the landing. This, according to sources, was done to reduce the landing weight of the aircraft. “The SpiceJet must tender a public apology for causing agony to the passengers, including two infants. It was a horrific experience,” they demanded.
Meanwhile, sources said, the ATC at Delhi informed the Srinagar-based ATC about the possibility of the flight making an emergency landing at the Srinagar International Airport. However, barely minutes after the discussion between the ATCs, the pilot decided to make an emergency landing at Delhi instead of Srinagar. “He (the pilot) preferred landing at Delhi because there you have more facilities of landing in emergency than you have in Srinagar,” the sources said.
It has been reliably learnt that the ATC had sounded an “internal alert” at the Srinagar airport, strictly urging the officials not to make the alert public. “We were ready to see the flight landing in emergency at the Srinagar airport,” said a top AAI official.
He said there was a standard procedure to be followed by the pilot wherein he was not supposed to inform the passengers about the emergency landing to avoid panic.
The SpiceJet station manger at Srinagar Airport, Irfan Hussain Kanth said, “In such a situation, it is the discretion of the pilot to land where he wishes to. He preferred Delhi."
Lastupdate on : Mon, 24 May 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 24 May 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 25 May 2010 00:00:00 IST
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