SAA made an emergency landing at the Port Elizabeth International Airport following fumes that entered the cabin. Picture: Supplied.
SAA made an emergency landing at the Port Elizabeth International Airport following fumes that entered the cabin. Picture: Supplied.

SAA flight makes emergency landing after fumes reported in cabin

By Staff reporter Time of article published Feb 18, 2020

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SAA made an emergency landing at the Port Elizabeth International Airport following fumes that entered the cabin, Herald LIVE reported. 

The flight from Johannesburg to Port Elizabeth had around 80 percent occupancy. According to AeroInside, the Airbus A320-200 was heading to Port Elizabeth. 

It revealed that two cabin crew began to feel unwell after an unusual odour entered the cabin. The flight landed safely with emergency services nearby. 

According to a statement by SAA spokesperson Tlali Tali which was obtained by Herald LIVE, a paint smell was reported in the cabin just before the plane was due to land. 

He said “oxygen was administered” to the affected crew members. He said the operating crew requested priority routing and landing.

Tlali said a full investigation into the incident is underway with the aircraft due to undergo a thorough inspection. 

Last month, the airline cancelled many international and domestic flights. 

According to Tlali, the decisions were in line with SAA’s usual policy of reviewing flights and consolidating services with low demand. 

He said during the current process of Business Rescue, the cancellations represent a responsible strategy to conserve cash and optimise the airline’s position ahead of any further capital investment.

The airline had experienced some highs with their new Airbus A350-900. It is one of the four new Airbus A350-900s that SAA added to its fleet in October 2019. It replaces the Airbus A340-600, which was being used on the route.

The aircraft, which is environmentally friendly and improved fuel-efficiency can fly further than any other aircraft in commercial service, the airline revealed.

The A350 features quieter cabin and relaxing in-flight experience, including the all-new In-flight Entertainment, extra-legroom seats in Economy Class and lie-flat beds in Business Class. 

“The introduction of the A350s will contribute to our operational efficiencies and cost reduction, and forms part of the ongoing fleet renewal programme,” the airline revealed. 

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