Friday, September 22, 2017

SpiceJet mishap: Travellers suffer as Mumbai airport crawls

Mumbai: A day after the removal of a Spicejet aircraft stuck on its main runway, Mumbai airport continued to report delays and rescheduled flights as it gradually limped back to normal operations.
On a day the aviation regulator, Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) grounded two Spicejet pilots of the Boeing 737 aircraft pending enquiry, Flightradar24.com, a website monitoring live air traffic at global airports, listed Mumbai airport as the second airport with worst delays after Shenzhen airport in China. The website was reporting an average delay of 17 minutes for arrivals, and 49 minutes for departures. It also reported 230 flights delayed and 24 cancelled flights.

Passengers of Air India flight AI-695 complained that the airline management had left their aircraft on the tarmac for close to three hours. A passenger, Ram Mohan Pathak told Mumbai Mirror from the flight: "First they merged a Mumbai-Lucknow flight with Mumbai-Benares flight and the flight scheduled to leave at 10.20 am on Thursday was delayed. After boarding, it wasn't taking off. First the flight crew said the delay was due to baggage of eight passengers. Later, they said the delay was because of the pilot leaving as he had done his overtime. They just made us sit in the plane without food or water."

Pathak said that through some friends, he managed to contact the new Air India managing director Rajiv Bansal's office, and that's when things began to move. "After we contacted the new CMD's office, a new pilot has been brought in and the flight is taking off," he said at around 3 pm. When contacted, the Air India spokesperson did not answer calls.
22/09/17  Satish Nandgaonkar/Mumbai Mirror

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