Jet Airways' flight to Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam had to land in Yangon, 4 hours after taking off from Mumbai after passengers faced difficulty in breathing due to drop in cabin pressure
A Jet Airways' flight from Mumbai to Ho Chi Minh via Bangkok made an emergency landing in Yangon almost four hours after its take-off yesterday due to drop in cabin pressure. The pilot of flight 9W 070, which took off from Mumbai at 9.30 am, made an emergency landing at 1.10 pm (IST) at Yangon in Myanmar when its passengers faced difficulty in breathing due to fall in pressure at 32,000 feet.
The Boeing 739 had taken off on schedule, but when it was an hour away from Bangkok, it faced a drop in cabin pressure and was forced to land at Yangon around 2.10 am (local time). The 184 passengers on board faced difficulty in breathing as the oxygen level had dropped and the masks dropped down for the passengers' relief.
"During the journey, we experienced low cabin pressure, heavy turbulence, unexpected descent from 32,000 to 10,000 feet and breathlessness. Then, the oxygen masks dropped down and, with their help, we managed to breathe a little better. While receiving security instructions in numerous flights, I had never imagined that one day we would have to use these masks. Hats off to the young cabin crew who took care of scared passengers on board, and the captain who managed safe emergency landing at Yangon airport," said Dharmil Thakkar, one of the passengers. The passengers were taken care of at the Yangon airport terminal.
Meanwhile, a Jet Airways flight took off with engineers from New Delhi at 6 pm for Yangon to cater to those stuck there and repair the grounded plane. It landed there at 9.30 pm (IST) and then took off to reach Bangkok at 11.30 pm. All the passengers to Ho Chi Minh were provided alternatives by the airline.
A spokesperson from Jet Airways said, “Jet Airways 9W 070 from Mumbai to Bangkok was diverted to Yangon due to technical reasons. The aircraft landed safely at 1410 hours local time in Yangon. All guests have been transferred to the airport terminal and served refreshments. Jet Airways is operating a relief flight from Delhi to Yangon to enable them to complete their journey terminating at Bangkok. As a result of the diversion, Jet Airways 9W 070 from Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City made alternate travel arrangements for guests. At Jet Airways safety to our guests and crew is of prime importance. We regret any inconvenience caused.”
The spokesperson added, “The aircraft that was flying at a height of around 32, 000 feet developed pressurization issues in the cabin and the oxygen masks were deployed. It was then that the captain and the pilot looking at the situation decided to land in the nearest airport.
Commenting on the situation Aviation Expert Dr. Vipul Saxena explained, "The incident was serious as pressurisation failure can be fatal for passengers especially those with pulmonary disorders and heart patients and in extreme cases even normal healthy passengers can fall sick due sudden lack of oxygen. It's a challenging situation where the pilot is required to descend the aircraft to 7-8000 feet for passengers to have normal respiration even without oxygen mask, keeping rate of descent well under control so that passenger's pressure and movement of blood and other body fluids remain under control."