Posted by By Kenneth Ehigiator on
ANOTHER air incident was averted yesterday when the flight of a Chanchangi Airlines Boeing 727-200 conveying 60 passengers to Abuja was aborted five minutes after take-off due to hydraulic problem.
ANOTHER air incident was averted yesterday when the flight of a Chanchangi Airlines Boeing 727-200 conveying 60 passengers to Abuja was aborted five minutes after take-off due to hydraulic problem. Pilot of the aircraft, with registration number 5N-BEU, noticed hydraulic leakage and made an air return to the Murtala Mohammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos at exactly 1:45pm.
The aircraft engine had a loud bang on touching down on the runway of the airport, and was grounded while taxing to the tarmac for a stop, but the grounding of the aircraft did not result in disruptions of flights, as aircraft took off and landed while it remained on the runway. Emergency fire tenders of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) responded promptly in case of any fire.
FAAN’s Cobus apron bus was soon moved to the scene of the incident to evacuate the passengers who, according to the airline’s co-ordinator and public relations officer, Alhaji Mohammed Tukur, were transferred to another aircraft to continue their journey to Abuja.
The evacuation of the aircraft from the runway took another 40 minutes to achieve by the airport authorities, but imminent arrival of President Olusegun Obasanjo from Abuja prevented the aircraft from leaving the scene for a longer time.
Tukur told newsmen that the incident was a normal occurrence in aviation. According to him, the pilot did what was expected of him by returning the aircraft to base on noticing the hydraulic leakage.
“It’s a normal thing for the pilot to have made an air return on noticing there was a problem. It happens all over the world,” said Tukur, who lamented the delay in evacuation of the aircraft by FAAN.
He said Chanchangi Airlines had to bear the cost of hiring facilities of the Skypower Aviation Handling Company Limited (SAHCOL) to tow the aircraft off the runway.
The Chanchangi spokesman said the airline had always ensured that none of its pilots made more than 80 hours flight per month in line with its quest for safety, stressing that this was even lower than the 100 hours spelt out per pilot by the regulatory agency. At press time yesterday, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) was yet to react to the incident.
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