Air India’s Delhi-bound flight AI 078 had to deplane passengers minutes before takeoff ,due to technical snag at Biju Patnaik International Airport
BHUBANESWAR,July3: The Air India’s Delhi-bound flight AI 078 had to deplane the passengers minutes before takeoff from Biju Patnaik International Airport here on Sunday morning. Around 168 passengers and eight crew members alighted from the plane safely.
The aircraft was moving from apron to runway through the taxiway, when the snag was detected by the pilots. The flight had to be stopped at the taxiway. It made a u-turn a little later towards the apron to deplane the passengers.
“There was some problem in the engine. The pilots didn’t want to fly it after detecting the problem. An announcement was made that the flight can’t fly. Due procedure was followed to vacate the plane,” said an Air India staff. He declined to divulge the detail of technical problem.
Padmini Rout, international chess player from Odisha, was one of the fliers. “I was to go to Delhi to attend the inaugural of Commonwealth Chess Championships. It was really disappointing as I had to immediately book a ticket in another plane for Delhi paying exorbitant tariff,” she told the media at the airport.
Air India sources said the disembarked passengers were given hotel facilities. “Around 10 per cent passengers were given alternative Air India flight because of their urgency. The remaining passengers will be flying in the evening before 8 pm after the technical problem is fixed,” said the Air India officer.
Airport director Suresh Chandra Hota said engineers and materials from Delhi have been sought to repair the plane. “There was no panic among the passengers as all exited safely through the normal ladder,” he said.
Recently, the Union cabinet has given nod to sell out government-owned carrier, which is suffering losses.
On May 22, around 155 passengers on board the Bhubaneswar-bound Air India flight made an emergency landing at Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport after smoke was detected in the cockpit. The flight from Mumbai to Bhubaneswar returned back midair to Mumbai shortly after takeoff.