Dubai carrier flydubai acknowledges Russian report on 2016 crash

Russian emergency rescuers examine the wreckage of a flydubai flight FZ981 at the Rostov-on-Don airport on March 20, 2016. (AFP)
Updated 27 November 2019

Dubai carrier flydubai acknowledges Russian report on 2016 crash

DUBAI: Dubai budget carrier flydubai has acknowledged the conclusions and recommendations of a report issued by Russia’s Interstate Aviation Committee on Tuesday.

The report blamed pilot error and possible crew disorientation during bad weather at night led to the fatal 2016 crash of flydubai flight FZ981 in the early hours of March 19, 2016 at Rostov-on-Don airport in southern Russia after aborting a second landing attempt in high winds. All 62 people on board died.

“Flydubai would like to thank the Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) the Russian Authorities and the Accredited Representatives for their work,” statement from the airline said.

“During the official investigation, while observing ICAO’s Annex 13 protocols, flydubai appointed a number of subject matter experts to conduct a thorough internal investigation of the factual data as well as to provide substantive responses to the Investigator In Charge.

“In accidents involving Human Factors, it is important to exhaust all possible scenarios when interpreting the factual data. It is the priority of the industry to understand all possible factors contributing to such a tragic accident and ensure critical insights that can make aviation safer are shared.

“We have taken our obligations seriously and have implemented additional actions above and beyond those identified in the Final Report. As part of flydubai’s ongoing commitment to improved air safety, it is our intention to share our additional learnings and insights with the industry,” the carrier added.

Ghaith Al-Ghaith, the chief executive of flydubai, also said that they are almost finished with the compensation process for those who have been “impacted by the loss of loved ones following the accident involving FZ 981.”

“We have now settled the majority of claims and it remains our priority to complete this process. We recognize this is a poignant moment for the families and our long-term care team remains available for as long as they need,” he said in a statement.

Al-Ghaith likewise reiterated the airline’s commitment to improved air safety.

“flydubai will continue to work closely with its industry partners and the regulator to share learnings with the joint aim of enhancing air safety,” he said.


Delta fined $50,000 for discriminating against Muslim passengers

Updated 25 January 2020

Delta fined $50,000 for discriminating against Muslim passengers

  • The flight attendant said she saw Mr.X texting on his cell phone using the word “Allah” several times
  • The captain refused to let the two passengers re-board the plane

WASHINGTON: Delta Air Lines was Friday fined $50,000 by the US Department of Transportation to settle allegations it discriminated against three Muslim passengers who were ordered off their planes.
In its consent order, the department said it found Delta “engaged in discriminatory conduct” and violated anti-discrimination laws when it removed the three passengers.
In one incident on July 26, 2016, a Muslim couple were removed from Delta Flight 229 at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris after a passenger told a flight attendant their behavior made her “very uncomfortable and nervous.”
“Mrs X” was wearing a head scarf and the passenger said “Mr X” had inserted something into his watch.
The flight attendant said she saw Mr.X texting on his cell phone using the word “Allah” several times.
The captain then spoke with Delta’s corporate security, who said Mr.and Mrs.X were US citizens returning home and there were “no red flags.”
However the captain refused to let them re-board the plane.
The Department of Transportation said the captain had failed to follow Delta’s security protocol and it appeared that “but for Mr.and Mrs.X’s perceived religion, Delta would not have removed or denied them reboarding” of their flight.
The second incident covered in the order involved another Muslim passenger who boarded Flight 49 at Amsterdam heading for New York on July 31, 2016.
Other passengers and flight attendants complained about him but the first officer saw nothing unusual about him and Delta security also said “Mr A“’s record had “no red flags.”
The captain prepared the plane for departure but then returned to the gate and had Mr.A removed and his seat searched.
The Transportation Department said the captain had not followed Delta’s security protocol and the removal of Mr.A “after being cleared was discriminatory.”
Delta disagreed that it engaged in discriminatory conduct but “does not dispute that each of these two incidents could have been handled differently,” the order said.
The government said the fine “establishes a strong deterrent against future similar unlawful practices by Delta and other carriers.”
Following the July 2016 incidents, Delta said it had reviewed and enhanced its procedure to investigate suspicious activity “to make it more collaborative and objective.”