June 15, 2024

Athens News

News in English from Greece

The passenger opened the door in the plane at a height of 213 meters (video)

Scary moments on an Asiana Airlines flight when the plane door opens mid-air with 200 people inside.

The incident happened as a Jeju-based airliner was coming in to land in Daegu, South Korea on Friday, CNN reports. Frightened passengers grabbed the armrests of the seats under the gusts of the strongest wind.

An airline spokesman said a 30-year-old man sitting in an emergency seat, for no apparent reason, opened the door when the plane was about 700 feet (213 meters) above the ground, about two to three minutes from landing in the city located in 150 miles (240 km) south of Seoul.

The plane landed safely, the man was detained by local police. He admitted that he opened the door, but did not say why he did it. South Korea’s Ministry of Transportation said on Friday it was investigating a person who violated aviation laws.

The statement said that anyone who violates the Aviation Security Law, which includes the actions of passengers operating doors, exits or equipment inside an aircraft, can be prosecuted and sentenced to up to 10 years in prison. The ministry said it had sent an aviation security inspector to check if there were any irregularities in aircraft maintenance.

According to Asiana Airlines, there were 200 people on board, including 6 crew members. Asiana Airlines passengers in need of medical attention were taken to the hospital. According to the Daegu fire department, 12 people suffered minor injuries from hyperventilation, nine of them were hospitalized.

The plane was flying from Jeju Island, located off the southern coast of South Korea, to Daegu. Aviation expert Geoffrey Thomas of Airline Ratings called the incident “very strange”:

“It is technically impossible to open these doors in flight.”

The expert noted that the landing speed of the A321 is approximately 172 miles per hour, that is, the wind blew the aircraft cabin at that speed. According to him, the door behind the wing of the aircraft opened into this airflow: “It seems implausible that the door could be opened against the airflow, it is technically impossible, but somehow it happened.” Asiana Airlines announced CNN:

“The aircraft is automatically set to adjust the cabin pressure depending on the altitude of the aircraft. When the plane is high in the air, the door cannot be opened, but when the altitude is low and close to landing, the door can be opened.”

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