HCMC – The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) has suspended two foreign pilots from work and seized their licenses after a Vietjet aircraft skidded off the runway while landing in HCMC yesterday afternoon.
It also suspended six flight attendants and formed a team to investigate the incident.
Aside from working with the cabin crew and the relevant agencies, the CAAV investigation team will have the plane’s black boxes decoded, and analyzed the data of the flight to determine the cause of the incident, which left Tan Son Nhat International Airport in HCMC temporarily shut for six hours. It only resumed regular operations at 6:30 p.m.
However, the aircraft was not pulled to the airport’s apron until 8:30 p.m. on the day as technical staff had to elevate the plane to replace its blown-out tyre and conduct other checks.
Yesterday, the aircraft, which was arriving from Phu Quoc island off Kien Giang Province, veered off the runway into a grass field at some 12:10 p.m. amid a heavy downpour and strong winds. All 217 passengers and eight cabin crew members who were on board were safe, confirmed the local low-cost carrier Vietjet.
The incident affected hundreds of flights to and from the airport.
According to a captain who is a flight instructor, similar landing incidents have occurred during bad weather conditions such as heavy rain and strong winds.
The captain explained that the pilot could have been unable to control the plane in the right direction due to the heavy downpour and tailwind, leading to it sliding off the runway. Moreover, if the pilot suddenly hits the brakes, it could cause possible damage to the nose gear and the plane can skid off the runway as a result.
Early this morning, the plane was towed away from the scene of the incident.