On a SpiceJet flight from Mumbai to Bengaluru on 17 January, a 37 year-old passenger found himself trapped for the entire duration of the journey. Due to a malfunction, the man, who had gone for a toilet break just after take-off, got stuck inside the toilet and had to stay there for 1 hour and 45 minutes. Even though the crew onboard tried to unlock the faulty door, they didn’t succeed and it was only after landing that the man was liberated from his uncomfortable position.
In a rare mid-air event in a flight from Mumbai to Bengaluru , a SpiceJet passenger was stuck inside the aircraft lavatory for around an hour due to malfunctioning of door on Tuesday. Airline To Provide Full Ticket Refund.— FL360aero (@fl360aero) January 17, 2024
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After landing at Bengaluru airport, technicians of the private airline SpiceJet were able to intervene and free the passenger. During his time inside the toilet, crew members were able to communicate with him using pieces of paper which they slid under the closed door. The passenger was urged not to panic. Once the plane got ready to land, crew members asked him to prepare himself by closing the commode lid and sitting on it.
“On 16 January, a passenger unfortunately got stuck inside the lavatory for about an hour on a SpiceJet flight operating from Mumbai to Bengaluru, while the aircraft was airborne due to a malfunction in the door lock”, SpiceJet explained in a statement. “Throughout the journey, our crew provided assistance and guidance to the passenger. Upon arrival, an engineer opened the lavatory door, and the passenger received immediate medical support.”
While the airline apologised to the passengers and said he would get a full refund for his flight, the man was left “traumatised” by the whole experience and the way in which SpiceJet handled the situation. “I managed to draw the attention of the crew who tried to open the door. It was getting scarier every minute. (…) I was traumatised, dazed and injured as I was thrown around inside the toilet as the plane landed”, the man, who prefers to stay anonymous, told the Times of India.
Moreover, according to the passenger, it took 20 minutes for the technicians to open the door after the plane had landed and he claims not to have gotten any medical help after being freed. “When I came out, I had bruises, and my vision was blurred for a while”, he told the Times of India. “I got a bottle of water and a barrage of apologies from SpiceJet.”
This is the latest in a string of aviation incidents in India just this month. A passenger recently slapped an IndiGo pilot after his flight was delayed by over 10 hours, while passengers aboard an Air India flight found chicken in their vegetarian meals.