At 9:55 this morning, 31 October 2010, a 1Time Airline Flight 119 destined for Cape Town with 128 passengers aborted take-off due to an engine failure. The pilot left the runway and stopped the aircraft at one of the airports’ aprons. Airports Company south Africa (ACSA) fire fighters were already on scene and responded to an engine fire on the left side of the aircraft.
“Passengers were evacuated via the Emergency chutes. In the process of evacuation, eleven passengers were injured and referred to at the O.R Tambo International Airport’s Clinic of which six people were transferred to the ARWYP Hospital in Kempton Park,” said Bongani Maseko, ACSA’s Airports Operations Director.
Immediately after the incident, the runway was closed and a full inspection of the entire runway was conducted. Fire, Rescue and safety officials, cleared and collected all debris that came off the affected airline’s engine. This was followed by a secondary inspection where the runway was declared safe for normal operations.
“ACSA conducts runway inspections three times a day O.R. Tambo International Airport. The last inspection conducted at the airport was at 6 o clock this morning. Prior to the departure of the affected aircraft, Forty-one (41) aircraft departed from O.R. International using the same runway,” added Maseko.
Maseko concluded that in an emergency of this nature, ACSA is required to provide a holding facility and this was done within minutes of passengers disembarking the aircraft. Passengers have also been updated via the Flight Information Display Systems at Cape Town International Airport.