NCAA probes Dana Air plane emergency door incident
• Airline alleges sabotage
Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority yesterday launched an investigation into the opening of Dana Air plane emergency door shortly after it landed at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja.
The apex regulatory body said the probe was to unravel how and why the door opened as the fully loaded aircraft was taxing.Meanwhile, the airline has alleged sabotage in the incident, arguing that the emergency door could not have opened without a passenger ripping it apart.
An amateur video footage that went viral yesterday afternoon showed the emergency door of a Dana Air plane wide opened as the aircraft was heading to the apron. The footage showed passengers watching in shock, as some jostled to capture the unusual scene on their phones.Spokesman of the NCAA, Sam Adurogboye, confirmed the incident and said a four-man team from the NCAA had inspected the aircraft for airworthiness at Abuja before its return to Lagos for further probe.
Media and Communications Manager of Dana Air, Kingsley Ezenwa, explained that by design, the emergency exit doors of their aircraft were plug-type, backed by pressure, which ordinarily cannot fall off without tampering or conscious effort to open them by crew or passenger.
“We also wish to enlighten that, when an aircraft is airborne, it is fully pressurised and there is no way the seat or door could have been ‘shaking’ as insinuated by some reports.
“A thorough inspection was, however, carried out on the said aircraft upon landing in Abuja by our engineers and a team from the NCAA, and no issue was reported. There was also no threat to safety at any point.
“The flight was only delayed for eight minutes as we needed to demonstrate to the regulators that the safety and comfort of our guests is at the centre of our operations. We wish to apologise to our guests for any inconvenience such report may have caused and for the slight delay on the return service to Lagos,” Ezenwa said.
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