In the second incident of its kind, a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight was forced to offload 50 passengers at Beijing Airport after a crew member mistakenly activated the emergency chute.
The Tokyo – Beijing – Islamabad flight had arrived from Tokyo’s Narita airport a few hours earlier and was parked at Beijing airport. The plane was preparing for departure when the emergency door was activated causing an inevitable delay.
Around fifty passengers were disembarked as a result, along with their checked in baggage from the Boeing 777 aircraft (registration AP-BMH).
According to PIA spokesperson Mashood Tajwar, the slide was activated during the loading of inflight refreshments. He also added that all the affected passengers were provided with hotel accommodation and will be adjusted in the next available flight.
“Safety is our first and foremost priority, and as per standard operating procedure we had to offload nearly 50 passengers joining from Beijing along with their luggage,” he said, adding that the passengers were informed about the cause of delay and were provided with accommodation.
“These passengers will be adjusted on the next available flight to Pakistan,” he added.
The national carrier’s CEO Air Marshal Arshad Malik has ordered an inquiry about the incident. Disciplinary action is expected against the person responsible for the incident.
Earlier this month, a lady passenger boarding a Pakistan-bound flight at Manchester airport, opened the emergency exit slide mistaking it for the toilet.
The incident delayed the flight by seven hours, and over three dozen passengers onboard were also offloaded.