A Nigerian plane made an emergency landing in Ghana after smoke was detected in the cabin, officials said on Friday, March 9, 2018.
The “unknown source of smoke” in the aircraft cabin forced the pilot in command of the flight to declare emergency 81 nautical miles to the Kotoka International Airport, Accra.
The aircraft, owned by Arik Air, was travelling from Lagos to Accra on Tuesday when the fault was detected but no-one was hurt, a company statement said.
“Arik Air flight W3 304 from Lagos to Accra on March 6, 2018 declared an emergency in line with standard operating procedures, when (an) unknown source of smoke was detected in the cabin”, it said.
The incident occurred 130km from the Ghanaian capital but the plane “landed safely in Accra without further incident.”
According to a passenger, who sent the incident message on social media, the cabin crew issued them serviette to cover their noses to avoid being choked by the smoke.
A Nigerian lady has told of her near death experince on board an Arik air flight from Lagos headed to Accra Ghana.
According to the lady who’s on Twitter as Adetutu Balogun@Tutsy22, 35 mins into the 55mins flight, the flight with flight name ‘Stephen’ allegedly caught fire and was forced to make an emergency landing.
The lady also accused the management of being irresponsible, saying that they put a flight out without oxygen masks, thereby endangering the lives of their passengers.
Read her tweets below:
@ArikAirlineNg @arikairflight flight w3304 airborne Accra on Tue 6/03/18 caught fire. D flight which took off at exactly 7.20pm was said to have caught fire barely 35min into its flight.HORRIBLE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: A NEAR CRASH INCIDENT ON ARIK AIR FLIGHT FROM LAGOS TO ACCRA.
1. @ArikAirlineNg @arikairflight flight w3304 airborne Accra on Tue 6/03/18 caught fire. D flight which took off at exactly 7.20pm was said to have caught fire barely 35min into its flight.HORRIBLE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: A NEAR CRASH INCIDENT ON ARIK AIR FLIGHT FROM LAGOS TO ACCRA.
— Adetutu Balogun (@Tutsy22) March 9, 2018
2. Passenger: The name of the aircraft is STEPHEN. It was a Dash 8 NextGen propeller aircraft. The flight took off precisely 7.20pm (Lagos time) 35 minutes into the 55 minutes flight, I started perceiving something smelling like a burning stuff.
3. Shortly after the guy sitting next to me asked if I perceived any smell of burning stuff and that confirmed my worst fears. Before you could say jack, smoke has filled the cabin.
4. The air hostesses were busy scampering around opening the cabins and the lavatories to check if they could trace the source of the smoke without success.
5. While that continued, the oxygen masks that were always being advertised during the safety demo prior to take-off couldn’t be released instead we were handed tissue papers to use to cover our noses to minimize and filter out possible carbon monoxide inhalation.
6. About 5 minutes after, precisely with 15 minutes of flight time remaining, the pilot came on the public address system to inform us that they have smoke coming into the cabin and that they don’t know the source and that they have DECLARED EMERGENCY”.
7. At that point we knew that our lives were only in God’s hands. Everyone prayed to his/her Gods. To the glory of God, the flight successfully landed by 8.15pm (7.15pm Accra time) to the waiting of several fire service trucks at Kotoko International airport, Accra.
8. We were evacuated into a waiting bus with instruction to leave everything behind in the cabin. Sadly there was no Arik official to address us neither was there any manner of first aid attention given to the passengers to manage stress and possible elevated blood pressures.
9. After a while our cabin luggage were brought to us and we had to leave from there to go through the Ghana immigration to our individual destinations.
10. I’m highly discouraged that this near crash major incident was not reported in the media 2 days after (today is 08/03/2018) and I suspect a cover up by Arik and the authorities. So I have chosen to use the social media to ensure this news gets out.
11. Kindly keep forwarding this message till everybody is made aware of the quality and kind of services Arik air gives and the possible cover ups before something terrible happens.
12. @NCAAGOVNG should ground the plane until: – The circumstances of the mishap is known, – Why ArikAir put a plane without oxygen masks in the air? – Why ArikAir failed to provide support for traumatised passengers after landing?
13.ArikAir acted extremely irresponsible & knowingly endangered d lives of those passengers by breaching basic safety regulations.We demand a proper investigation into this incident.
It was the latest in a string of incidents involving the aviation sector over the past month.
On February 7, an emergency exit door fell off a Dana Air jet as it landed in Abuja after flying in from Lagos.
Six days later, an Atlanta-bound Delta airlines jet was forced to return to Lagos after a fire was detected in one of its engines with passengers using emergency slides to evacuate the plane, officials said.
On February 17, an Air Peace plane had to delay landing in the southwestern city of Akure because cows had strayed onto the runway. Another Dana Air plane overshot the runway at Port Harcourt on February 20 due to heavy rain and flooding.
And on Wednesday, the Nigerian government ordered a complete audit of Dana Air’s operations to determine the technical fitness of its fleet.
The airline was grounded after a 2012 crash outside Lagos that killed all 153 on board and six on the ground. Mechanical failure and pilot error were blamed.