AviationHighlight

Another aviation disaster averted in Lagos – passenger and ex-DG, federal agency

"A ground engineer came in, and those of us in front clearly heard him say, “You can’t go. Your landing gear is bad"

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A former director-general of the Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR), Dr. Joe Abah, recounted on Thursday how a ground engineer at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Ikeja, Lagos, averted another potential air disaster in Nigeria.

Mr. Abah, via his official X handle on Thursday, said the systems put in place to check aircraft and the young, proactive Nigerian engineer saved the lives of many onboard an Ibom airline heading for Abuja.

He said that as the aircraft prepared for takeoff, there was a bang on the door from outside, which made the flight attendant open the door.

“As she did, a ground engineer came in, and those of us in front clearly heard him say, “You can’t go. Your landing gear is bad,” Abah wrote.

“I boarded a 7 a.m. @ibomairlines flight in Lagos this morning, heading to Abuja. My brother, @seunonigbinde was on the same flight, and we had chatted briefly about work. The aircraft door was shut, phones switched off, and it was ready for takeoff.

“As we were about to start taxiing, there was a loud knock on the aircraft door from outside. We all wondered what it could be. The knocking got more persistent. The flight attendant had to open the door again.

“As she did, a ground engineer came in, and those of us in front clearly heard him say, “You can’t go. Your landing gear is bad.”

“The pilot made a ‘political’ announcement that they need to perform some additional checks before takeoff and apologized for the delay. He spoke with the engineer and, a few seconds later, announced that we were to disembark.

“I thank God that we have the systems in place to check this and avert potential disaster. And that we have some diligent Nigerians who take their work seriously.”

The Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos has come under intense scrutiny with the recent Dana Air mishap and the early Thursday morning fire that was swiftly put out by the Airport Rescue and Firefighting Services (ARFFS).

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