Mumbai, Aug 16 : Around 300 air passengers, who were stranded for nearly 22 hours after a London-bound Jet Airways plane was grounded due to a technical glitch, finally left for for their destination this morning. “The stranded flight took off at around 11.45 AM today after a long delay of 22 hours. The airline today operated it as a special flight 9W 1118 with an Airbus 330,” sources told PTI here. The London flight was grounded due to technical issue, Jet Airways spokesperson had said in a statement yesterday, adding that the airline will be operating a special flight on Saturday morning to London Heathrow.
The flight 9W 118 was scheduled to leave for London’s Heathrow Airport on Friday at 12.45 PM but Jet Airways grounded the aircraft, citing “technical” reasons. “We were told that the flight will depart at 6 PM since the airline had arranged another aircraft, but later we were informed that this aircraft too was grounded due to a technical glitch and passengers would fly only at 1.30 AM in the morning,” a stranded Jet Airways passenger said last night.
The airline also facilitated travel for some of the guests on other airlines and on its later flight to London. The rest of the guests have been provided accommodation at the Leela Mumbai, the spokesperson said. It may be mentioned that aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation had in a first of its kind order last month asked the budget carrier Spicejet to refund fares to the passengers after one of its flight was delayed by five hours on account of a snag. This is the third incident involving a Jet Airways aircraft in the recent past.
On Thursday, a fire alarm in a Jet Airways flight from Delhi to Bhopal caused a scare as it was about to take off in the early hours. The ATR 72 turbo prop aircraft, operating flight 9W 2654, abandoned take off after the pilots saw the alarm on the cockpit flight panel. Last week, in another incident, a Jet Airways flight with over 280 passengers plunged 5,000 feet while overflying Turkish airspace as the commander was asleep and the co-pilot busy with an iPad carrying flight information, leading DGCA to suspend both of them.