The fire in an IndiGo aircraft at Kathmandu airport last year was due to “over tightening” of hose pipe at the time of maintenance work, according to DGCA probe report, which also indicated that crew did not have adequate training to deal with emergency situations.
Except for small cuts and bruises, there was no injury to any of the 182 persons on board, including six crew members, when the right main landing gear caught fire in IndiGo’s Airbus A320 aircraft during parking at Kathamandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport after it had landed from New Delhi on March 8, 2014.
“As the operating hydraulic pressure is very high, the scratches/metal gauging marks in the connector plug/sleeve gave way to the hydraulic fluid.
“After the hydraulic fluid came in contact with hot brakes smoke was generated and subsequently fire. The scratches/metal Gauging marks in the inter diameter of QAD connector had probably occurred due over torque (over tightening) during maintenance,” Directorate General of Civil Aviation said in its detailed 30-page final investigation report into the incident.
Surprisingly, the inquiry officer had completed its report in July but the DGCA, the aviation regulator, has made it public only now, few weeks after the airline got listed on the bourses.
Suggesting measures to ensure safety of the flight, the probe report said that IndiGo should make sure that the pilot in command adheres to standard operating procedure in case of emergency evacuation and not influence the cabin crew during evacuation process.
IndiGo procedures for arming/disarming the doors should be “inline with the Airbus/aviation operators within the country”, it added.
According to the investigation report, at the time of the incident the captain had instructed cabin in-charge to evacuate immediately and then instructed evacuation from right side of the plane.
“This was not as per Airbus/company approved operating procedures,” the report said.
Another recommendation is that IndiGo should ensure that its cabin crew is adequately trained to deal with crowd control in emergency evacuations.