Passengers had to evacuate a fume-filled flight from the wing after an electrical fault forced an emergency landing.
The Jet2.com Boeing 737 from Ibiza with 152 passengers and five crew suffered an electrical system malfunction leading to a “strong acrid small” in the cabin, air accident investigators found.
The emergency escape from the aircraft at East Midlands airport last September was hampered by one exit slide twisting and becoming unusable.
This followed the pilot issuing a mayday alert due to smoke in the cabin.
The pilot was also unable to tell whether the landing gear had deployed and the aircraft PA system failed, according to an Air Accident Investigation report.
Because of the landing gear problems, the aircraft had to fly over the airport at 1,000 ft so ground crew could check if it had come down, according to the report.
The AAIB said: “As the aircraft taxied towards its parking stand, an acrid smoke haze appeared within the cabin and flight deck and an emergency evacuation was carried out.
“Although the aircraft was successfully evacuated, cabin communication difficulties were encountered due to the failure of the PA system and a fault with a loud hailer unit.”
The report added: “The cabin crew member at the aft left exit was unaware initially that the aircraft was to be evacuated and she disarmed the door in preparation for a normal disembarkation.
“When she saw through the window that passengers were sliding off the trailing edge of the left wing, she re-armed the door, deployed the slide and shouted for passengers to come towards her to use her exit.”
One passenger suffered a minor injury.
The AAIB concluded all the problems in the incident – bar the escape chute – stemmed from the loose connection possibly caused by the over-tightened nut.
It also noted smoke started to seep into the cabin because a fan stopped working creating a build up of dust and oil in the air conditioning.
It was suggested the problem with the escape chute could be because a crew member was more used to opening a door on the opposite side of the aircraft.
Since the incident, Jet2 has included a procedure within its operating manual which will better-prepare pilots in the event of a repeat and also reduce the chance it will result in an evacuation, the report said.
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