NAC’s wide body aircraft grounded 21 days after official operation

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Sep 14, 2018-

Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC)’s Airbus 330 wide body aircraft has been grounded after a dent was spotted on its cargo door, 21 days after it officially started its commercial flight operations.

According to an official of NAC, the A330-200 jet named Makalu with the registration mark 9N-ALZ was grounded after the dent was found at the cargo door of the plane.

The engineer found the dent in the cargo door while carrying out post landing check of the plane after it landed at the Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu from Delhi.

“The cargo door has been dented,” the source said, adding, “Investigation is underway to find whether the gouge occurred in Kathmandu or Delhi. It has yet to be established.”

This is NAC's second newly bought wide-body aircraft.

According to an official of NAC Commercial Department, the corporation had to make alternative arrangements as it could not operate the aircraft by carrying out maintenance under this circumstance.

The NAC has been operating two flights to Delhi on Friday. The grounded aircraft was scheduled to fly to Delhi on Friday morning. However, the NAC flew the Delhi-bound passengers in Boeing 757. Similarly, the NAC is planning to fly the passengers of flight 217 in another wide-body aircraft scheduled to land in Kathmandu from Bangkok.

“The NAC is holding discussions with Airbus via email,” the official said. “The NAC will operate the aircraft only after maintenance according to manual,” the official added.

“The checked in passengers will be flown to Delhi in another aircraft that is scheduled to land in Kathmandu from Bangkog at 6pm,” a TIA-based NAC official said.

The passengers who were supposed to fly to Delhi at 5 pm on Friday have been kept at restaurants due to lack of aircraft.

“We are sending the passengers to restaurants as it is required to feed the passengers if the aircraft is delayed for more than two hours,” the source said.

The aircraft which conducted its first official flight from Kathmandu to Bagkok on August 24 was brought from Toulouse of France on July 26.

Yar Kamal, MaheshworDangol and AmulyaRatra were the pilot of the Delhi-bound aircraft which operated on Thursday.

The NAC’s first wide body Airbus Annapurna was brought to Kathmandu on June 28.

The NAC owns two narrow body 320 aircrafts as well. Among them, one aircraft named Sagarmatha has been grounded since eight days after a bird hit.

The NAC has been facing challenges to manage flights to eight destinations by three aircrafts after two of five jet planes were grounded.

“The flight to Dubai scheduled for Friday has been postponed for Saturday afternoon due to lack of aircraft,” a source said.

The NAC informed most of the passengers about the delay and the NAC has to keep checked-in passengers to hotels in Kathmandu and Deubai.




Published: 14-09-2018 19:02

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