Nigeria dodged a bullet this week when a Delta airline disaster was averted.
“The flight landed safely and customers exited the aircraft on the runway via emergency slides. Airport fire authorities met the aircraft upon arrival. Delta’s customers were bused back to the terminal”, a statement from the airline would soon convey.
This was very much disaster averted.
One of the two engines of the A330-200's had malfunctioned soon after takeoff. The very fact that passengers had to be evacuated through emergency slides tells the rest of the story.
Five passengers came off worse—they had sustained minor injuries.
“We are working with the authorities to assess the situation”, Pratt & Whitney, manufacturer of the airline’s engine, said in a statement.
Delta added that “It is aware of five customers reporting non-critical injuries as a result of the evacuation.
“Delta teams are focused now on providing overnight hotel accommodations to customers and will rebook customers on an alternate Delta aircraft Wednesday afternoon. The safety of Delta’s customers and crew members is always our top priority”.
Pulse can confirm that Atlanta bound passengers from the A330-200's were airborne on the alternate flight, just as this story was put together.
Repeated calls and emails sent the way of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) for its version of events, went unanswered before this story was filed.
However, an airport worker who was on the ground as passengers alighted through emergency slides said “we thank God. It could have been worse. What happened was that the plane had to make a return as soon as the crew ascertained that one of the airline’s engines had developed a fault”.
On February 7, 2018, passengers onboard a local Dana airline relayed how the door of the aircraft made uncomfortable noise throughout the flight before giving way upon landing.
Dana denied this was the case. The airline said someone must have tampered with the door when the aircraft touched down.
The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) would set up a panel to investigate the incident.
Pulse will bring you updates of the Delta airline story as it unfolds.