AI flight diverted to Mumbai after pilot reports ‘loss of cabin pressure’

In another plane glitch incident, an Air India Boeing flight was diverted to Mumbai after an incident of loss of cabin pressure was reported by the captain. The Dubai-Kochi flight (AI-934) landed safely in Mumbai.

Following the incident, the Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile (DGAC), the aviation regulator, appointed two senior officers to carry out a preliminary investigation into the matter. The aircraft, from the Boeing B787 fleet, was also grounded by the DGCA and the derogated flight crew.

“We are grounding the #AirIndiaBoeing Fleet B787 aircraft and removing the flight crew,” a DGCA official said.

There have been several incidents of airlines reporting a technical malfunction over the past month, prompting the DGCA to carry out spot checks earlier this week. Last Sunday, IndiGo’s Sharjah-Hyderabad flight was diverted to Karachi as a precaution after pilots observed a fault in one of the engines.

Last week, on Saturday evening, Air India Express’ Calicut-Dubai flight was diverted to Muscat after a burning smell was observed in the in-flight cabin. The previous day, a live bird had been found in the cockpit of Air India Express’ Bahrain-Kochi flight.

SpiceJet is currently undergoing a regulatory scan. On July 6, the DGCA issued a show cause notice to SpiceJet following at least eight incidents of technical malfunction in its aircraft since June 19. The DGCA is currently investigating all of these incidents.

The DGCA had carried out spot checks on Monday this week and found that there was an insufficient number of engineering personnel certifying aircraft from the various carriers before departure.

Before each departure, an aircraft is checked and certified by an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME). The DGCA has issued guidelines for airlines on the deployment of AME personnel and ordered them to comply by July 28.

Spot checks also revealed that airline AME teams are incorrectly identifying the “cause of a reported defect”, the DGCA order noted. They also found there was an “uptrend in MEL (minimum equipment list) releases” from aircraft, he said.

(With PTI inputs)

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