A Turkish airline TK0626 flight from Lagos to Istanbul scheduled for Monday was cancelled as passengers refused to travel due to the plane’s faulty air conditioning system.
The passengers had already boarded and were set to take off when they realised the problem with the cooling system.
The pilot and crew of the flight, however, insisted on flying, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.
Richard Olatunji, one of the passengers on board, said the plane was taxing at about 1:30 a.m. when the faulty air conditioner was discovered.
“Here is hot and the crew is insisting on flying despite our protest. In fact one of the passengers has fainted and the crew was doing resuscitation on her in the plane and still insisted on flying. The pilot even said if we came down then we forfeit our money,” Mr. Olatunji told PREMIUM TIMES at about 1:30 a.m.
“Our clothes were drenched, they were working on the plane with us inside for about two hours and they said they have to close the door of the air craft to test if it was working or not and there was child in the plane.
“The air craft we boarded was nothing near cold, it was very hot when we came in which ought not to be so, that means they knew beforehand that there was something wrong with the plane, he said.
The delayed flight which was meant to leave the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos, at around 10:45 p.m. was eventually cancelled when the passengers started protesting on board.
The reporter could hear noise of the protesting passengers as at the time of the call.
The Nigerian manager in charge of the Turkish Airline flight later addressed the passengers after they returned to the airport.
He admitted that the management knew the air conditioning system was faulty and had gotten technicians to carry out repairs.
He said the pilot and crew only wanted to test run the plane with the passengers in it and had no intention of flying. He said there would have been no problem if the plane had flown because the fault was not a mechanical one.
The passengers were later transported to the Golden Tulip hotel in Festac at about 4 a.m.by the airline.
They were yet to get any feedback from the airline at 8 a.m. on Tuesday.