2 March 2015
WE were suppose to board a flight from Singapore to klia2 at 12.10 pm on Feb 23.
However, upon reaching the departure bay check point, the departure was further delayed to 12.25pm. By 1pm, everyone was waiting impatiently and an announcement came that the plane was experiencing some technical problem. The captain and ground technical team were working together with the klia2 Air Asia technical team, where the data and records could be reviewed and troubleshot.
By 2pm, the announcement was still in the negative, that the plane still could not take off. However, at 2.30pm, a decision was made to put all passengers onto a subsequent flight out of Singapore. This caused anxiety to some passengers who had connecting flights to catch.
There were a handful of crew assisting and handling the situation, while the pilot and crew of the abandoned flight were just looking on from the other side of the walkway. They should have come in to give a hand as the flight had been cancelled. Where they disappeared to later, we don't know.
Priority should have been given to those with connecting flights at KLIA. But, when this was announced, most seemed to be. I guess everyone just want to get out of there. Most joined the queue and stood for hours. Many got restless, but fortunately, there were no temper flare-outs.
Things could have been done better and faster, rather than getting everyone in the queue. Maybe Air Asia does not have a contingency plan or flow chart for if they are hit with certain concerns. Perhaps they could do this next time:
1. Have complete name list of the passengers.
2. The staff should spread out and review individual passengers to see whether they genuinely have a connecting flight.
3. Move these passengers up and issue new boarding passes.
4. Proceed to the new gate for departure.
5. Do all this in a cool and orderly manner.
They should also provide some snacks and drinks. I was on a Delta Air flight from Narita last month, where the departure was only delayed by an hour. But, in that instance, the crew were so courteous to say "have one on us". We were given a McDonald's burger.
When finally the Air Asia flight took off, it was 4.50pm. There was a heavy downpour at klia2, and the captain reported that there were already 35 planes in the air circling around to get clearance to land. We finally landed past 6pm, after more than 6 hours plus for a flight that takes only an hour.
However, I must commend the captain pilot of our return flight (AK 712), who was very patient in dealing with the situation rather calmly and professionally. Thank you for that.
Original Source: nst.com.my