No fewer than 37 persons escaped death on Wednesday evening when an Overland Airways plane caught fire midair enroute Ilorin to Lagos.
It was a near-miss as the plane’s engine caught fire midair.
The lot fell on the four-member flight crew of Overland Airways to carefully land the distressed aircraft on the Runway 18R of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos without an incident.
The ATR 42 aircraft, which has 37 passengers on board, was en-route Ilorin-Lagos when the plane suddenly developed a major fault.
According to the Punch, the pilots had sent out a Mayday to the Lagos control tower to prepare them for the worst.
Mayday is an emergency procedure word used internationally as a distress signal in voice-procedure radio communications. It is an international radio distress signal used by ships and aircraft.
The Pilot-in-Command of the distressed plane was reportedly on approach to Lagos when the engine developed the fault.
The Lagos airport control tower consequently put the airport emergency response team, including the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria’s fire services department, on notice, following the Mayday.
The pilot finally landed the faulty plane safely on the international airport’s runway amid a fully prepared airport emergency response team.
The airline’s statement on the incident later said: “Overland Airways wishes to inform the general public that its flight OF1188 from Ilorin to Lagos experienced an unusual high turbine temperature on one of its engines today, Wednesday, June 15, 2022, around 7:50 pm.
“This occurred in the approach phase of flight and the aircraft landed very safely as the crew skillfully implemented their standard procedures for such abnormal situations.
“All 33 passengers remained calm through the process and safely disembarked row by row in accordance with post-COVID-19 procedures after the aircraft came to a halt on the Murtala Mohammed International Airport Lagos runway 18 Right. No passenger was hurt in any way.
“Overland Airways salutes the professional interventions of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority and the Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria (AIB-N) which were very prompt and reassuring.
“Overland Airways regrets any inconvenience to its passengers and assures the travelling public of its full commitment to the safety of its services and passengers.”