More than a hundred passengers faced inconvenience when an Air India flight which was supposed to fly to Mumbai, never took off due to some engineering snag in the plane and lack of a spare aircraft. The airline technicians tried solving the issue but were unable to do so and hence another aircraft was sent from Mumbai which reached Visakhapatnam in the wee hours of Saturday.
This plane landed back in Mumbai at 6 am on Saturday, nearly 14 hours ahead of the schedule. All the passengers of the aircraft AI-651 faced problems due to the unscheduled delay in the flight timing. A spokesperson said that some of the passengers decided to call off the trip while others were accommodated in hotels by the airline. Passengers who booked connecting flights from Mumbai city suffered great loss of money and time as well.
Around 30 passengers of the AI-651 flight missed their connecting flights while a few Gulf bound travellers who missed their flight were left stranded with no money. However, the airline offered refunds and hotel accommodation to all the passengers of the delayed flight.
According to the data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation [DGCA], the punctuality record of Air India has been the poorest when compared to other domestic airlines. In the month of October, 27,284 out of 58,925 domestic fliers have been accounted who faced delays exceeding two hours which is highest by any other domestic airline. The data given by DGCA also added that the reason behind the last minute delays for maximum flight were the engineering snags which the airline technicians could not solve immediately. When situations like these occur on a frequent rate, how can any passenger rely on the punctuality of the airline when time is the biggest asset!