Biman flies into a tailspin

June 3, 2012

Glitches in aircraft lead to chaotic flight schedule
Biman Bangladesh Airlines has been failing to maintain its flight schedules since May 1 due to technical glitches in a number of aircraft.
In the latest incident yesterday, a Kathmandu-bound A310 airbus returned to Dhaka Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport because of a fault in its hydraulic system.
The pilots, however, managed to land the aircraft safely at 12:45pm in Dhaka with 67 passengers on board, said sources in Biman’s flight operations department. It took
nearly six hours to fix the problem before the plane took off again for Kathmandu at 6:34pm.
It is one of many regular incidents which have been causing immense suffering to passengers.
“Except for a flight to Singapore, almost all other flights departed from Shahjalal International Airport three to four hours behind schedule today [yesterday],” said
an official wishing anonymity.
Of those, the London-bound flight scheduled for 10:10am was late by more than two hours while flights to Muscat and Kuwait were three to four hours behind schedule.
On May 31, two of the four DC-10 aircraft of Biman were grounded because of faulty engines. Only one of them could be repaired till yesterday while the other one has a
major problem in its engine.
The other two DC-10 aircraft went out of order months ago. One has been at the Biman hangar for the last four months, while the other has been declared to be beyond
repair, sources in the airlines have said.
Besides, technical problems afflicting one of the two newly-purchased Boeing 777-300ER aircraft need to be dealt with immediately. Nevertheless, Biman flight engineers
have kept the aircraft in operation. Moreover, an airbus A310 has been in Singapore for repair for over five months.
Of Biman’s 14 aircraft, nine are in operation. Obviously, with five aircraft out of the picture, the pressure on the authorities to accommodate all flights of the
national flag carrier as they have been mapped out in the schedule is huge.

-With The Daily Star input

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