SpiceJet Encountered 8 Safety Malfunctions In 18 Days; Issues Notice By DGCA
On Wednesday, 6 July, a show cause notice has been issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to SpiceJet in connection with the degradation of safety margins of its aircraft.
As per DGCA, the company has failed to comply with the Aircraft Rules,1937 as it failed to establish safe, efficient, and reliable air services.
The DGCA Audit & Show-Cause Notice
As per the DGCA’s September 2021 audit, the component suppliers were not being paid on a regular basis, leading to shortage of spare parts.
Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia took to Twitter, after sharing the notice issued by DGCA, that passenger safety is paramount.
On multiple occasions, DGCA said that the aircraft would either return back to its originating station or continued landing to the destination with degraded safety margins.
DGCA, after the developments, issued a show-cause notice asking why “action should not be taken against the company.”
SpiceJet in a statement said that while the company is committed to ensuring a safe operation for its passengers and crew, it will respond to the notice within the specified time period.
The statement said that “We are an IATA-IOSA certified airline. SpiceJet successfully completed the meticulous audit program for recertification in October 2021. We have been regularly audited by DGCA. All our aircraft were audited a month ago by the regulator and found to be safe.”
In the statement company said “All flights of SpiceJet are conducted in compliance with the applicable regulations of the DGCA Civil Aviation Regulations on the subject”.
Ajay Singh, Chairman and Managing Director of SpiceJet said that it is not due to the the shortage of spare parts that these malfunctions happened.
As per news agency PTI, he said that “None of the incidents that have happened in the last few weeks have anything to do with shortage of spare parts”.
SpiceJet Malfunctioning Incidents
After a SpiceJet Q400 aircraft, operating SG 3324, from Gujarat’s Kandla at an altitude of 23,000 feet had its windshield cracked mid-air, and due to this malfunction it was forced to carry out a priority landing in Mumbai.
In another malfunctioning incident, SpiceJet’s Delhi-Dubai flight was diverted to Karachi as the Boeing 737 Max aircraft’s fuel indicator started malfunctioning.
After Pakistani Civil Aviation Authorities permitted the Indian plane to land at the Jinnah International Airport on humanitarian grounds, the aircraft made an emergency landing at Karachi airport at around 9:15 am. This led to 138 passengers stranding in Karachi for nearly 11 hours after taking off from New Delhi in the morning.
On Tuesday, China-bound SpiceJet freighter plane, after pilots realised that the aircraft’s weather radar was not functioning, was returned to Kolkata.
In the last days, it is the eighth incident of a technical malfunction affecting a SpiceJet aircraft.
On Wednesday, SpiceJet’s shares hit a new one-year low of Rs 35, declining 7 percent on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).
Its shares opened at Rs 37 per piece after falling by 2.33 percent to close at ? 37.65 on Tuesday. The Dubai-Karachi flight malfunction had happened on the same day.
During the morning trade on Wednesday, the airline’s shares were trading at 2.66 percent down to ? 36.65 per share.