Stanchart boss Mizinga Melu relives experience on Emirates flight EK 714

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STANDARD Chartered Bank managing director Mizinga Melu
STANDARD Chartered Bank managing director Mizinga Melu

STANDARD Chartered Bank managing director Mizinga Melu has relived the horrendous experience of being on Emirates Airline, Flight EK 714 which caught fire 30 minutes after take-off from the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport in Lusaka on Sunday night.

Mrs Melu, who is also Zambia Daily Mail board chairperson, narrated the hair-raising experience of over 135 passengers and 15 crew members.

“We could have died…Thank God we are alive,” the shaken Mrs Melu said.According to Mrs Melu, all seemed well until 30 minutes in the air when “we heard a bang…it was so loud and suddenly the plane started shaking…Thank God we are alive…I’m traumatised.”Mrs Melu was flying to America through Dubai.

Emirates country manager Khalid Ali Hassan said flight EK 714, which was flying at an altitude of 34,000 feet above sea level, returned safely to Lusaka after an engine failure.

The Airbus 330-200 carrying 135 passengers took off from KK International Airport around 23:00 hours.Mr Hassan said Emirates engineers from the Dubai head office were scheduled to arrive in the country to establish the cause of the fire.

Impeccable sources have also disclosed that the British manufacturers of the Rolls Royce engines and other aircraft body are expected in the country to launch comprehensive investigations.

The manufacturers are “seriously concerned” about the fault because it is the first time an airbus 330-200 has developed such a serious fault which could be a manufacturing error, the sources said.

“The aircraft landed normally, taxied to the stand and passengers disembarked. Passengers were accommodated in hotels and have now been re-booked on alternative flights with Emirates or other airlines. The safety of our passengers and crew is of utmost importance and will not be compromised,” Emirates spokesperson Ms Gillian Langmead said.

A check for some of the affected customers at some hotels in Lusaka yielded no results as management at the hotels declined to disclose clients lodging on the Emirates account.

But impeccable sources at Kennth Kaunda International Airport disclosed that the engine is extensively damaged and requires replacement and that blades snapped and ripped through the engine cover.

The sources said about three port side fan blades snapped off the propeller and shot through the engine nacelle (engine cover or housing), causing a big hole.
The port side is the left hand side of a plane occupied by the captain while the co-pilot occupies the star bode on the right hand side.
The sources said the development caused a fire to the engine which the pilots managed to put out using an inbuilt fire extinguisher operated from the cockpit.

“The plane left at 23:00 hours and the next flight we were going to service was KQ [Kenya Airways] after clearing Emirates but we received information when it was 64 miles [about 103 kilometres] away from Kennth Kaunda International airport, that the Emirates plane had an engine fault.

“It had an alternative of landing in Ndola but the airport does not operate for 24 hours, and it is limited in capacity to handle such a big plane,” the source said.

The source added that the plane also had another alternative of landing in a neighbouring country but could not because of instability in that country.
And a check at the airport found an investigations team made up of officials from the Department of Civil Aviation and Zambia Air Force, inspecting the affected engine and taking photographs for preliminary investigations.

The plane had been towed away from the apron and its engine covers were visibly covered with black soot. It was cordoned off with masking tapes.
Airport officials were by press time searching for possible debris which could have fallen from the plane, to no avail.

[Zambia Daily Mail]

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55 COMMENTS

  1. Ndeke shi mwandini. Can never get used to flying, I am in a shiver, every time I fly. Mwapusukeni Mayo. Muletola no bwapona

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    • Ala iwe!! am the same. I used to enjoy flying not until one flight between Lusaka and Lilongwe; it was raining, very dark, and the thing was so bumpy!! From that time, i have never been the same.

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  2. Hope to watch the documentary on National Discovery channel soon. Which neighbouring country is unstable at the moment??

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  3. We thank God that Zambia is favored. For so long as we pray continually we will be preserved. Now we have masking tape in Zambia? The one written police do not pass through ya mu film? I hope si ya ma elections.

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  4. It is not called the safest mode of transport for nothing. When disaster strikes the survival rate is usually a flat line…

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  5. Emirates should send their own mechanics, don’t allow Zambians to panel-beat your plain. Thats why they are busy looking for deblis so they can weld them.

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    • You idio.t what makes you think Zambian engineers touch those planes; those planes are serviced in Dubai. you brainwashed cock.roach 

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    • You speaking as if you live somewhere in a cave.If there’s any debris on the runway even tiny ones, they could pose serious problems that could result in accidents for other planes using that runway iwe na iwe.

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  6. Thank God. But I do not understand why Ndola airport is not big enough to accomodate ka small A 330-200. Also this plane is too small to be doing long haul flights such as Lusaka Dubai. If it was Nairobi Dubai, it is alright. But Lsk-DHB is too much for ka A 330-200. Try to use A 340. Anyway, ni AfriKa twasebana.

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    • Clearly you don’t know what you are talking about, please stop commenting if you know nothing about aircraft. Do you even know the capacity and range for this aircraft, go to airbus website this might help you.  

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    • Please stop embarrassing us and learn to read boss it helps. Google is free and has a lot of info!

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    • Awe mukwai smaller planes than A300 do fly from Lusaka to London which is a longer distance so that argument doesnt hold

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  7. It’s not the first time Rolls Royce engine has had enginer failures related to loud explosions nature. There has been many reports around the world particularly Rolls-Royce’s A380 Engine.

    Google Rolls-Royce Engine failure and you will get many returns of similar incidents. Check out Qantas flight QF32 A380’s engine explosion images by searching Google images.

    These engines have problems, even reported with the new Rolles Royce Dreamliner enginees. There is no need to investigate this one as the issue is well known by RR and airliners around the world. The only good news is there has been no fatalities that have associated with these engine explosions. The engine have so much redundancy and reliability built in them, they always make it to the nearest landing point.

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  8. Thank God our people are safe. It is quite strange to have such a problem as Emirates have a very good safety record. They put their customers first. But why did they refuse. They have to accept and be transparent. These things happen.  MWAPUSUKE MWEBANTU. We thank God for your lives.

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  9. Why are you blocking my comments.If you do not want us to comment then you stopping asking us to respond to your articles.

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  10. There is no need to make a fuss about this issue, such incidences happen every where and @ 15 you are right about the QANTAS incident. Its just that in Zambia we do not have so many flights, so such an occurance is bound to be blown out of proportion. Just about a week ago two QANTAS planes almost had a mid air collision simply because of miscommunication between airtraffic controllers and the crew of one of the planes which was taking off and was put in the path of the other one that had been cleared to land.

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    • whats normal about death about to happen iwe? Ask people that have experienced these incidents and thay will tell that these nothing normal about experiancing such as a passanger. These incidences are never supposed to happen and no one is supposed to experiance them> would you have saud the same thing if that Emirates flight didnt land safely? or that Qantus plane collided and people died?

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    • Blown out of proportion?!? Yep that engine was definitely blown out of proportion and lives were put at risk. We value every individual life and should make a fuss when told there is nothing to worry about. You may not be but the people on board, their families, the crew, even the airline itself is worried. Common occurrence or not. The truth is they landed so the airline hid the facts for commercial reasons which it could not have done if circumstances were different.

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  11. When ZWD reported this case PF cadres said they were liars so here is a report of someone who was on board. Thank God your life has been saved my sister

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    • ZWD reported that the flight had crush landed, that is what the PF cadres were arguing about boss! :)

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    • iwe just sit, ZWD said that the plane hit the bushes and was badly damaged, where do you see that iwe muntu?

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  12. Emirates would have said the plane hit a flock of birds and got fire but not with these modern engines as Rolls Royces would have been sued them.
    Our government is too scared to comment as it is in these guy’s pocket; the president uses these planes Christ’s sakes…this is what happens when the KK Airport is just used a mere bus stop. Emirates airline is  only interested in dumping everyone at their duty free headquarters in Dubai because there is no restrictive night flying there; so they jet people in at any time of the night.
    What is wrong with Zambians you have all those smartphones in your pockets and purses and not a single individual took a picture of the aircraft’s engine or the plane.

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  13. Ba Melu ba muselela kwakaba bapusuka. During Rupiah Banda’s reign all the analysis from her said Banda needed to continue ruling for the economy to survive. Now she is in PF’s pocket.

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  14. Ba Mwaka naba Cety Watchgalu I never read and will never read. PF cadres were debating about crash-landing reports in most newspapers. The plane did not crash-land but had an emergency landing

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  15. 48 hours ago…

    PR machine in effect: We landed with a bump, which is perfectly normal… Passenger: That landing rattled my jaw…Pilot: Gulp… Everything is fine. My hands were as steady as a surgeon.Mechanic: Holy cr*p!Kidding. Good that no one was harmed. Just keep us informed, Some industries will make us search for black boxes when they know the answers. Just sayin…

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  16. PR machine in effect: We landed with a bump, which is perfectly normal… 

    Passenger: That landing rattled my jaw…

    Pilot: Gulp… Everything is fine. My hands were as steady as a surgeon.

    Mechanic: Holy cr*p!

    Kidding. Good that no one was harmed. Just keep us informed, Some industries will make us search for black boxes when they know the answers. Just sayin…

    Re-pasted. Come on Emirates. New statement time.

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  17. When ZWD first reported this, PF cadres got erections and called them liars. Now you have heard from the horse’s mouth ba mukolwe and you look so foolish!

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  18. PF carders need to man-up and apologize to the Zambian Watch dog. You called them all kinds of names when they reported this very story. BTW, there is something I don’t like about this woman called Melu. She seems decent but something about her just doesn’t sit right.

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  19. @ Third Eye – looks like Emirates went out of their way to make early reports look misleading. I bet they wiggle out of taking responsibility by twisting their wording. The denial is more annoying than media reporting and blogger reaction. ZWD can always sue claiming their reputation was damaged but that would be a hard sell :)

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  20. Emirates airline crash landed at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport in Lusaka at about mid night.
    It is not clear what caused the accident but initial reports indicate that the plane had a tyre burst and slipped into the bush.
    There are no reports of casualties so far but sources say the plane has been extensively damaged
    Kenneth Kaunda Airport international recently experienced unprecedented power black-outs that endangered airlines and travellers. thix what your ZWD said, does it sound the ame to you?

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  21. Definitely a hard sell. Oh this is too funny. Is this what the fuss is about? There were only 27 comments on the LT story and 4 bloggers mentioned ZWD’s questionable reputation for truthful reporting. This provides a reference point. Thanks Mushala.

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  22. The whole incident is being totally blown out of proportion. The Emirates aircraft did not crash land. It had an inflight engine shut down for which all airline pilots are trained and repeatedly tested to be proficient to comfortable control safely. Situation could have been loss of hydraulics, electrical power, or engine.

    This failure had nothing to do with Kenneth Kaunda International Airport or GRZ. Aircraft do every so often develop faults. However in international civil aviation everything is tested and double tested for the safety of you the passengers. Have faith and enjoy your next flight.

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  23. Ba Third Eye
    Please tell those keyboard tapping clowns to sue; lets see what physical address they will put on those court documents opps I forgot they only exist in cyberspace. If you read their article and this passenger’s statement there are two different statements; this is why I call Watchpig readers feeble minded dullard chaps.

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  24. If this was a Zambian Airline such as Zambezi or Proflight, its Licence would have been suspended already. BUT now that it is EK, we will wait and see. Anyway, BIG matako Silavwe Kenny is no longer at DCA.

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    • you are very right. thats what happens to low cost ailines too in S.A. If that happens to a B.A or SAA aircraft, its normal but if its a low cost currier every media will cover the story and people will speak crap

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