Budget airline SpiceJet was today ordered to operate just 50 percent of its flights for eight weeks by the airline regulator in an unprecedented crackdown following an unusually high number of safety incidents involving the airline. SpiceJet said this would not affect its flights during the lean travel season and that no flights would be cancelled.
“Given the findings of various sampling, inspections and the response to SpiceJet’s submission about the cause of the show, SpiceJet’s departures are limited to 50% of departures in order to maintain safe and reliable air transportation service. approved… for a period of eight weeks,” the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said in an order.
During these eight weeks, the airline would be subject to “enhanced surveillance” by the DGCA.
This could be the strictest action an airline has undergone in recent times.
“Any increase in departures by more than 50 percent” is subject to the condition that the airline demonstrates “to the satisfaction of DGCA that it has sufficient technical support and financial resources to operate such increased capacity safely and efficiently.” said the order.
The regulator said SpiceJet had failed to establish a safe, efficient and reliable air transport service. The airline is taking steps to halt the trend, the order said, but must continue its efforts to provide a safe and reliable air transport service.
In its response, SpiceJet said there would be no flight cancellations due to the order as flights have already been reworked in the lean travel season.
“We have received the order from the DGCA and will act as directed by the regulator. Due to the current lean travel season, SpiceJet, like other airlines, had already rescheduled its flight operations. So there will be absolutely no impact on our flight operations.” want to reassure our passengers and travel partners that our flights will be on schedule for the coming days and weeks. No flights will be canceled as a result of this order,” the airline said in a statement.
“DGCA’s observation that SpiceJet is taking steps to halt the trend of incidents is very encouraging and we will continue to operate under the strict guidance of the regulator,” it said.
The government had warned SpiceJet after eight flight safety incidents were reported in 18 days.
In one case, a plane flying from Kandla in Gujarat made a priority landing in Mumbai after its windshield cracked.
There were separate cases of smoke in the cabin, a faulty flashing light and a bird strike.
The airline released a tweet yesterday denying all security violations.
India’s most preferred airline is as safe and reliable as it has been for the past 17 years. Aviation regulator DGCA has checked our entire operational fleet and every aircraft has been given the green signal to fly and there has been no safety violation. https://t.co/qF9fzxFyfv
— SpiceJet (@flyspicejet) July 26, 2022
“India’s most preferred airline is as safe and reliable as it has been for the past 17 years. Aviation regulator DGCA has checked our entire operational fleet and every aircraft has been given the green signal to fly and there has been no safety violation,” SpiceJet had tweeted yesterday.