The sizzling heat in Goa and the lack of air conditioning inside the aircraft resulted in a nightmarish experience for passengers of a SpiceJet flight from Goa to Bangalore on Wednesday afternoon.
The condition was so bad that, sources said, some passengers demanded to be de-boarded.
Arun Prabhakar, who was returning to Bangalore with three of his friends, said, “Passengers had boarded the flight SG 246 by 2.30 p.m. The scheduled time for take off was 2.50 p.m. But it took off around 3.20 p.m.”
He said the travails of passengers, including children and the aged, started when heat began building up inside.
The air conditioner had not been switched on as the crew awaited permission to take off, he added.
“Unable to bear the extreme heat, passengers requested the cabin crew to switch on the air conditioner. The cabin crew promised to set it right, but the situation inside continued to be stuffy,” he said.
Many passengers reportedly complained of the extreme heat inside the aircraft. As tempers frayed, the captain announced that there was a technical glitch in the air conditioner and promised that the situation would improve soon, said Chandan Shetty, another passenger. “With the door closed and air conditioner not working, the situation became unbearable. Some passengers wanted to be de-boarded,” he said.
A SpiceJet spokesperson said, “In peak summer, cabins can take time to cool off until take off even if the air conditioner is on full as engines are on idle while an aircraft is waiting for clearance to take off.” The spokesperson attributed the delay in take off to the congestion resulting from weather conditions in Mumbai.