Emergency at Surat Airport: Sharjah Flight Pilot Hits Dumper, Plane Flips, One Wing Damaged, 162 Passengers at Risk

Surat International Airport, which recently attained international status, faced a significant incident on March 13. During the night, a Sharjah-bound flight, carrying over 160 passengers, collided with a dumper truck on the airport premises, resulting in damage to the aircraft’s wing. This incident has brought back memories of the 2014 buffalo hit incident, where a collision between a flight and a buffalo occurred. 

Such incidents, even in the past, have tarnished the reputation of the airport. The recent collision has once again raised concerns about safety measures within the airport premises and the need for stricter enforcement to prevent such occurrences in the future.

Collision Between Plane and Dumper Truck Raises Concerns

Sanjay Shah, from the Work for Surat Airport group, expressed deep concern over the collision between a plane and a dumper truck on March 13. Such incidents have been recurring even in the past. 

The 2014 buffalo hit incident and similar occurrences, like the SpiceJet plane running off the runway, have raised alarms. Consequently, our group demands an immediate fulfillment of the long-pending request to enhance the functioning of parallel taxiways.

The left wing of the flight was broken

Pilot’s Encounter with Unseen Dumper Near Apron Leads to Turbulence

On the evening of last Wednesday, a Sharjah to Surat flight operated by Air India Express arrived at Surat International Airport, ferrying 162 passengers to the parking apron area. However, during the darkness of the night, the pilot failed to notice a dumper truck near the apron, resulting in a mishap. 

As a consequence, the aircraft’s wing was damaged. This incident, where the aircraft’s wing collided with the dumper truck, caused a sudden jolt in the plane, leaving passengers shaken.

Incident Occurred at 10:30 PM

The incident took place on Wednesday, March 13, at 10:30 PM. Following the damage to the wing of an Airbus aircraft operated by Air India Express, which had been grounded since Wednesday, a team of three members from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) was sent to inspect the aircraft. Subsequently, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) also arrived at Surat International Airport.

Board of Surat International Airport was found at the gate of the airport

Aircraft Grounded for Inspection

During the process of crossing the air bridge to park at Surat International Airport, the Sharjah to Surat flight encountered an unexpected collision with a dumper truck, prompting an SOS call. All 162 passengers were safely disembarked. 

Currently, the aircraft has been grounded for inspection, with repairs being conducted on its wing. According to available information, Surat Airport Director Rupesh Kumar Lohani, who is set to retire on Friday, submitted a preliminary report of the incident to the Director-General of Civil Aviation.

Significant Damage to Flight’s Right Wing

Surat Airport, lacking a PTT (Precision Approach Path Indicator) system, often faces challenges in ensuring smooth takeoffs and landings, especially when visibility is compromised. 

However, following significant damage to the right wing of the Sharjah-bound flight, Surat Airport authorities are in a state of frenzy. Flight operations will resume only after repairs to the Sharjah flight. This incident is expected to incur substantial financial losses for the airline company.

Dreams of International Flight Operations Remain Unfulfilled

Incidents like these not only tarnish the image of Surat International Airport domestically but also deteriorate its international standing. Such occurrences cast doubts on the feasibility of launching more international flights from Surat. 

The resultant financial losses may prompt other airlines to reconsider initiating flight operations from the city, as poorly managed incidents lead to economic setbacks.

Tragic Incidents at Surat Airport Over the Years

Surat Airport has witnessed several unfortunate incidents over the years, highlighting concerns regarding safety and operational efficiency:

October 2014: Buffalo Hit Incident – A buffalo collided with an aircraft on the runway, raising questions about wildlife management around the airport.

2016: Monkey Spotted on Runway – A monkey sighting on the runway during a flight’s landing phase posed safety risks and highlighted issues with wildlife control measures.

June 2019: Continuous Flight Safety Issues – Instances of safety violations persisted in the flight safety area, indicating lapses in operational protocols and monitoring.

August 2023: Windshield Damage due to Bird Hit – The aircraft’s windshield sustained damage in an incident involving a bird strike, emphasizing the need for improved bird strike prevention measures.

September 2023: Passenger Injuries during Landing – During landing, passengers suffered injuries due to a punctured tire, underscoring concerns regarding runway maintenance and emergency response procedures.

March 13, 2024: Collision with Dumper Truck – A recent incident involved a collision between an aircraft and a dumper truck on the airport premises, raising questions about ground safety protocols and vigilance.

These incidents collectively highlight the need for comprehensive safety audits, wildlife management strategies, and enhanced operational procedures at Surat Airport to mitigate risks and ensure passenger safety.

Rahul Sharma

My name is Rahul Sharma. As a passionate writer and explorer, I'm always seeking inspiration in lifestyle, fashion, beauty, food & drink, and travel. With years of experience in the industry, I bring a unique perspective to my writing, blending my love for culture, style, and adventure.