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Teary air hostess causes panic on Swedish flight

The Local · 9 Jul 2012, 06:44

Published: 09 Jul 2012 06:44 GMT+02:00

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The plane, which flew from Sturup airport outside of Malmö in southern Sweden on Friday evening, was ten minutes from its destination of Mallorca in Spain when smoke emerged from the cockpit.

“An airhostess on the verge of tears came and said that they had a technical problem,” said passenger Mattias Sonngård, to the Sydsvenskan newspaper.

“All we got to know was that the plane had been given permission for an emergency landing and that we should get into the emergency position with our heads between our knees.”

While it turned out that it was a broken television that caused the smoke, 23-year-old Sonngård explained that this information was never given to the passengers and that chaos ensued.

“It was total panic. People sat and screamed out that they didn’t want to die. The man in the seat behind me fainted and got help with the oxygen from another passenger. I asked an air hostess if we would crash on water or land. All I could think was that I didn’t want to drown – I wanted to die right away.”

When the plane eventually landed safely in Mallorca, flight staff still did not explain to the passengers what had happened, but rather, “sat on a bench and cried” according to Sonngård.

Johan Westin, head of Malmö Aviation, has since claimed that such a fault would never have caused a serious problem with the plane and the aircraft would easily have made the flight even if the screen had broken at takeoff.

He told the paper that the pilots were right to focus on landing the plane rather than informing the passengers, adding that he has “full respect to the fact that passengers became scared.”

Officials from Fritidsresor, Sweden’s largest tour operator criticized Malmö Aviation’s lack of information for the passengers affected.

“We understand that some of the passengers have experienced this as extremely unpleasant. Therefore, we want to ring around and check how everyone feels and how they experienced the onboard service,” a spokesman from the company told the paper.

“Sometimes it happens that people don't receive sufficient information about what has happened. If you’re the least bit afraid of flying, it’s obviously an extremely unpleasant and distressing situation.”

Story continues below…

TT/The Local/og


The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:21 July 9, 2012 by Cephalectomy
09:45 July 9, 2012 by tommy the cat
> If you're the least bit afraid of flying, it's obviously an extremely unpleasant and distressing situation.

Even if you love flying, seeing smoke from the cabin, crying air hostesses, and being told to assume the emergency position would be an extremely unpleasant experience.
10:03 July 9, 2012 by EP
Was in an emergency landing once in Canada, flight attends professional as they should be, no panic in the cabin since they kep us informed the entire time what was going on. Captain came on that time and in a calm voice stated that we have lost an engine and we will have to make an unscheduled landing. He sounded very re-assuring and despite it being a nervous descent people we very calm, some even joked.
10:44 July 9, 2012 by krattan
So low cost airlines either don't give employees enough training or select them carefully enough ? how surprising. Actually if I were to survive something like this I would probably be pleased. Certainly a memorable trip.
13:06 July 9, 2012 by sometimesinsweden
" Actually if I were to survive something like this I would probably be pleased."

A smoking tv?
14:10 July 9, 2012 by krattan
Meaning the traumatic situation. Whatever the cause was they didn't know at the time, did they.
14:42 July 9, 2012 by Nvd
It seems that it was CRT TV that smoked.

Buy LCDs. They are cheap. :D
15:49 July 9, 2012 by Frenchone
When you're dead being informed or not doesn't make much difference.
16:02 July 9, 2012 by sometimesinsweden
No surprise that a women got hysterical. Probably due on.
17:48 July 9, 2012 by mafketis
I keep saying it and no one pays attention - modern Swedes are cowards.

Why are so many Swedes abject cowards???
20:05 July 9, 2012 by olga118
Most people aren't afraid of flying, they are afraid of crashing. I would think that if you can not handle an emergency situation in a calm manner perhaps flight attendant isn't the job for you....maybe?
20:52 July 9, 2012 by Trenatos
I'm guessing that they didn't know it was just the TV that broke, while they were in the air.

Otherwise they wouldn't have requested an emergency landing, nor would the staff be sitting around crying afterwards.
21:43 July 9, 2012 by GLO
The flt crew should be canned. NO way they should keep jobs, Go work on flower wagon.....
06:58 July 10, 2012 by Uncle
"He told the paper that the pilots were right to focus on landing the plane rather than informing the passengers"

WHAT? There is a panic in the plane, people are fainting and air hostess is praying to God in tears and the captain of the flight "concentrates on landing"? What, he cannot talk? Cannot say "relax everyone it is only a screen, nobody is going to die"...Even surgeons can talk about anything during brain operation.

Banging on about the benefits of the Duty Free and about the expected weather at the destination is OK to announce in 2 languages, but when the cockpit is smoking, then the frontal lobe disconnects...
05:45 July 13, 2012 by Da Goat
I just hope the passengers don't chicken out on the promises they made to God ! He Loves you no matter if you are scared or not !
15:40 July 13, 2012 by james_g
@ mafketis - probably no-one pays attention because they realise you're a bit of a moron
17:23 July 16, 2012 by feathernoodle
This would NEVER happen in the U.S. The flight attendants (as we call them) are stone cold and serious. They have a lot of power (like, to have you arrested upon landing if you're being unruly in-flight), are very well trained for emergencies (serving you drinks & snacks is just a little extra thing they do). Here, they are more like para-police in heels that hand out coffee, tea or a bag of politically correct pretzels. THERE'S NO CRYING IN CRASH LANDINGS!
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