Nigerians are afraid. They don’t know how long more before another avoidable national tragedy.
Travellers aboard an Air Peace flight in Abuja on Sunday were thrown into a state of panic when the plane’s back tyres suddenly burst on the runway as they prepared for take off.
Thankfully, no serious mishap was recorded as all disembarked safely. The flight was eventually delayed till the following Monday (today) as the airline’s authorities proceeded to find solution to the bad tyres.
Operators of the airline said in a statement after the blowout that the tyres “deflated” during taxiing and it was noticed by the crew which then notified the pilot to halt.
It is the second time in a little over two weeks that an Air Peace plane would develop such technical fault.
An Enugu-bound flight in December had hovered over the airport for several minutes, leaving passengers praying for their lives. Many reportedly passed out in that particular incident and there were not enough oxygen masks. Air Peace claimed the incident occurred due to depressurisation.
The airline also had issues in 2017. Many travellers fear they can only be lucky for so long and have called on the NCAA to act promptly.
“Some friend of mine told me not to use Air peace cuz they had issues close to Dec. He said emphatically that there was a particular time they ran out of Gas while they were above sea level,” one person, Tunde, said in a conversation on Twitter on Monday.
@Ik3chukwu_M Some friend of mine told me not to use Air peace cuz they had issues close to Dec. He said emphatically that there was a particular time they ran out of Gas while they were above sea level
— paulson davidson (@tunde800) January 7, 2019
Sadly, travellers’ options are limited in Nigeria.
The birth of a national carrier, Nigerian Air, was supposed to be a relief for travellers. But that dream died almost as soon as it was conceived. The FG says it is suspended indefinitely.
Nigeria has experienced many tragic plane accidents in the last 20 years, no one wants another tragedy before action is taken to properly sanction incompetent airlines.
“Today it’s Air Peace, tomorrow it’s Arik, the next day it’s Azman… Is there no safe Airline in this country?” another person, David, said.