The Aviation industry has been in the news for all the wrong reasons in recent times. Last week, Dana Air flying from Lagos to Abuja suffered door mishap on arrival to Abuja Airport, a situation that generated controversy with passengers exchanging crossfire with the Airline. Why the Airline insisted that a passenger pushed down the door, passengers claimed that the door was making funny noise during flight.
This time, reports indicate that there was a robbery incidence involving an Arik aircraft taxing for take at the off in Lagos. The aircraft was said to be about to take off when the captain noticed that one of the Cargo holds was opened briefly and later closed. He radioed the control tower to inform them of the development and Airport security was dispatched to investigate while the passengers were evacuated to the shuttle bus on standby.
Meanwhile the airport security checked the aircraft and found nothing wrong, except a possibility of a freak trigger of the cargo hold light probably due to electrical malfunction.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority insisted the report was unfounded and lacked merit based on their investigations. They argued that Arik Air flight was behind the Air Peace flight and had its full light beamed at Air Peace aircraft and the security operatives on escort of the flights saw no one.
“The conclusion by NCAA suggesting that our information on the incident was a false alarm absolutely lacks basis. From the report, it is clear that the only reason for NCAA’s dismissal of the very serious security breach was the claim that when an aircraft of another airline beamed its lights after our pilot alerted the control tower to the incident, the suspected thieves were not seen.”,Airpeace said.
“We need to reiterate that our pilot’s call to control tower was made after the rear cargo hold of our aircraft was opened and shut after fifteen seconds. We, therefore, begin to wonder whether NCAA expected the suspected thieves to be there waiting after opening and shutting the cargo hold within a space of fifteen seconds.
“Even before we confirmed the incident, our guests (passengers) on board the aircraft had made their independent accounts of the occurrence public. We would have thought NCAA would make some effort to reach guests on board the aircraft to share their experience. But it decided, once more, to go its usual path – deny, dismiss and protect themselves from the truth.”