A Pakistan International Airlines flight from Manchester to Islamabad was delayed for seven hours after a passenger mistook the emergency exit for a toilet.
A passenger on board a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight on Friday opened an emergency exit door, while the plane was still on the ground waiting for take-off. The woman later said she believed it was the door to the toilet.
“The PIA flight, PK 702, from Manchester to Islamabad was delayed by seven hours. The departure was delayed on Friday night when a passenger erroneously opened the emergency exit causing the emergency chute to activate,” said a PIA spokesperson.
“The plane was parked on the runway when the airbag chute opened, so there was no threat of any kind.”
All of the passengers were offloaded from the flight and their luggage was removed.
“As per standard operating procedure, the PIA had to offload nearly 40 passengers and their luggage,” PIA spokesperson told media.
The representative added that the offloaded passengers were provided transportation and hotel accommodation, and then given seats on the next available flight. The company also said that an inquiry into the incident had already been ordered.
According to an aviation industry expert, deploying an emergency slide is not a small incident and can cost an airline between $6,000 and $30,000.