The Asiana plane’s emergency door, which was opened by a passenger while flying in the air, can be seen when the plane landed at the airport. Photo/REUTERS
SEOUL – South Korean airline (South Korea) Asiana Airlines has made the decision to stop selling certain emergency exit row seats after the recent shocking incident.
In that incident a passenger opened an emergency exit in mid-air, causing panic among the passengers.
The incident occurred on aircraft A321-200 as it approached Daegu International Airport. Although the plane landed safely, several passengers had to be hospitalized, but there were no serious injuries or damages as a result of the incident.
In response to the incident, Asiana Airlines announced that it will no longer offer sales of emergency exit seats 31A and 26A on its fleet of 14 A321-200 jets.
The airline stated that this measure was implemented as a safety precaution and will apply even if the flight is fully booked.
However, it is still uncertain how this measure will prevent other passengers on the plane from trying to open the emergency exits.
The person responsible for the incident, a man in his 30s, was arrested by the authorities in Daegu and faces charges of violating the aviation safety law.
He allegedly opened the door feeling suffocated and stressed after losing his job. If found guilty, he could face up to ten years in prison.
“He felt the flight was taking longer than he should have and felt suffocated in the cabin,” a Daegu police detective was quoted as saying by media.
Video footage shared on social media shows the moment the emergency exit opened, causing air to enter the cabin and passengers’ hair tousled in the strong winds.
Jin Seong-hyun, a former Korean Air cabin safety officer, noted that although passengers have opened emergency exits without permission while the plane was on the ground, this case appears to be unprecedented.
A Ministry of Transportation official stated that the man was able to open the door because the air pressure inside and outside the plane was the same.