The flight landed safely, but not before sending passengers into a panic and prompting many to make final intercessory prayers. But Pakistan Airlines contends there was no A320 emergency landing.
Pakistan International Airlines A320 Makes Emergency Landing
PK8726, operated by an Airbus A320 (AP-BLV), was traveling from Riyadh (RUH) to Multan (MUX) on Wednesday, June 10, 2020 when it developed an unspecified problem. The flight made an unscheduled landing in Karachi (KHI).
But there’s more to the story. In-flight, the A320 began making a strange noise that terrified passengers. The unexplained destination change to Karachi also did not help to assuage fears.
Anxious passengers recited verses from the Quran and prayed as the plane rattled to the ground. It was only after landing in Karachi that passengers were informed of that the aircraft encountered “issues” that prompted the diversion.
AirLive reports the issue was an aircraft door which would not close properly, which would help to explain some of the odd noises passengers encountered.
Passengers were offered transport on another PIA aircraft to Multan. Some allegedly declined, choosing to brave treacherous road conditions instead to reach the capital of the Multan Division in the Punjab region.
Meanwhile, PIA has downplayed the incident and disputed reports that it was an emergency landing. Instead, the diversion is being characterized as precautionary.
Pakistan International Airlines has a checkered past when it comes to safety and the latest incident, even if non-life-threatening, does not lend comfort to stepping onto another PIA flight (though I would…). With its reputation under scrutiny, PIA must take concrete steps to bolster its actual safety and image of safety.
image: Shadman Samee / Wikimedia Commons