What went wrong?
Well, apart from the runway accident, a lawmaker believes the airline crew of Cebu Pacific was wrong when they panicked as the plane carrying 165 passengers overshot the runway in Davao City Sunday.
Davao City Rep. Karlo Alexei Nograles said the Cebu Pacific cabin crew has to be investigated to ensure passenger safety in the future.
Nograles said he is disappointed the pilots and flight attendants were panicking instead of helping the passengers to calm down, even forgetting to open exit doors right after the crash.
“I’ve talked to one of the shaken passengers and he said it took 10 minutes before the pilot said anything to the passengers after the plane crashed. That was the only time when the emergency exit doors were opened,” Nograles said.
“The passengers disembarked using the slide so they had to leave all their personal belongings behind. It was raining hard and they were very slow in transporting the passengers from the plane crash site to the airport,” he added.
The lawmaker called on the House of Representatives to conduct a deeper probe, in aid of legislation, of the accident that occurred at the Davao City International Airport (DIA) on June 2.
The Cebu Pacific plane, under flight 5J 971 transporting 165 passengers from Manila to Davao City, skidded off DIA runway amid heavy downpour last Sunday.
Nograles also aired passengers’ frustrations about Cebu Pacific’s shabby treatment of passengers, who were terrified from the accident.
He said survivors of the crash were not even given instructions on how and where to collect their luggage.
“Upon arrival at the airport, the Cebu Pacific ground staff were disorganized. They did not know what to do, no instructions were given to the passengers about where to collect their belongings or where to claim them,” Nograles said.
“Up to now the passengers do not have their luggage yet. It reflects the lack of training of Cebu Pacific;s personnel in handling emergency situations and might require a deeper review on the standards and qualification of airline crews,” he added.
Nograles surmised the local carrier is “not equipped to respond to emergency situations such as plane crash.”
However, the airline denied this. “All 165 passengers have been safely shuttled to the airport terminal and their needs are being taken care of,” the Cebu Pacific statement read earlier.
“The in-flight crew should know how to handle actual emergency situations and not just good at making a demo during pre-flight procedures,” Nograles said.
“The inquiry should also tackle the various promotional campaigns of Cebu Pacific which often results to overbooking and most importantly, overworked pilots and in-flight crews,” he added.