Monday, March 24, 2008

Cabin fire aboard Etihad Airways A330

News media in the Middle East are reporting that a fire erupted aboard an Etihad Airways A330-200 aircraft while it was in flight. According to the Gulf News, the incident happened on March 13, 2008 during the cruise phase of a flight between Dhaka, Bangladesh and Abu Dhabi, UAE. Cabin crew were able to extinguish the fire, and no injuries were reported amongst the 231 passengers, two pilots and 11 cabin crew on board the flight. The flight continued to Abu Dhabi, where it landed safely.

The Gulf News article about the incident quoted Iain Burns, vice-president of corporate communications for Etihad Airways, who explained that a passenger had lit a cigarette inside one of the aircraft's lavatories, and that the cigarette then ignited some toilet paper. The lavatory's smoke detector alarm activated, and the cabin crew responded. Mr. Burns said that "the flames were swiftly extinguished by our alert, calm and expertly-trained cabin crew."

In their story about the in-flight fire, the Khaleej Times noted that the passenger who started the fire "was not arrested on arrival at the Abu Dhabi International Airport but has been banned by Etihad from further travel with it." The passenger was not named.

Congratulations to the Etihad cabin crew for a job well done.

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