SpiceJet Served DGCA Notice After Eight Safety-Related Malfunctions in 18 Days

This comes a day after incidents were reported with three separate SpiceJet aircraft.

3 min read

Video Producers: Mamta, Shohini Bose

Video Editor: Shohini Bose

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Wednesday, 6 July, issued a show-cause notice to SpiceJet in connection with the degradation of safety margins of its aircraft.

SpiceJet has failed to establish safe, efficient, and reliable air services under Aircraft Rules,1937, the DGCA said. It further said that DGCA's audit of SpiceJet carried out in September 2021 found that component suppliers were not being paid on a regular basis, leading to shortage of spare parts.

Sharing the notice issued by DGCA, Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia wrote on Twitter that passenger safety is paramount.

The DGCA noted that on multiple occasions, "the aircraft either turned back to its originating station or continued landing to the destination with degraded safety margins."

Stating that SpiceJet had thus failed to establish a "reliable, safe and efficient airline services," it issued a show-cause notice asking why "action should not be taken against the company."


'All Aircraft Audited a Month Ago, Were Found To Be Safe': SpiceJet on DGCA Notice

SpiceJet in a statement said it will respond to the notice within the specified time period, and was committed to ensuring a safe operation for its passengers and crew.

"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."

"All flights of SpiceJet are conducted in compliance with the applicable regulations of the DGCA Civil Aviation Regulations on the subject," it said in the statement.

SpiceJet Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said that the recent malfunctions were not due to the shortage of spare parts.

"None of the incidents that have happened in the last few weeks have anything to do with shortage of spare parts," Singh said, as per news agency PTI.

Just a day ago, incidents were reported on three separate SpiceJet aircraft.

One SpiceJet Q400 aircraft, operating SG 3324, from Gujarat's Kandla, was forced to carry out a priority landing in Mumbai on Tuesday after its windshield cracked mid-air. The plane was at an altitude 23,000 feet at the time of the malfunction.

In another incident, SpiceJet's Delhi-Dubai flight was diverted to Karachi as the fuel indicator started malfunctioning. The Boeing 737 Max aircraft made an emergency landing at Karachi airport at around 9:15 am after the Pakistani Civil Aviation Authorities permitted the Indian plane to land at the Jinnah International Airport on humanitarian grounds.

This left 138 passengers stranded in Karachi for nearly 11 hours after taking off from New Delhi in the morning.

In the third incident, a China-bound SpiceJet freighter plane returned to Kolkata on Tuesday after the pilots realised that the aircraft's weather radar was not functioning.

This made it at least the eighth incident of a technical malfunction affecting a SpiceJet aircraft in the last 18 days, and the third one to have taken place on Tuesday itself.


SpiceJet's Shares Hit a One-Year Low

Meanwhile, SpiceJet's shares hit a new one-year low of Rs 35, declining 7 percent on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) on Wednesday, 6 July.

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.

An Overview of Previous Such Incidents

  • A Delhi-Jabalpur SpiceJet Flight witnessed smoke in its cabin on 2 July

  • A SpiceJet Q400 aircraft halted its take-off from Patna airport after warning light at the plane's fuselage door illuminated on 25 June

  • A similar incident happened on a Guwahati-Kolkata flight

  • On 19 June, SG-725, heading for Delhi, was forced to make an emergency landing and return to Patna airport after its left wing caught fire midway due to a bird hit

  • On 20 May, around six of its flights were delayed on account of a "ransomeware attack", the airline claimed

(With inputs from PTI.)

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Topics:  SpiceJet   DGCA 

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