‘Airconditioning problems’ cited
A Philippine Airlines (PAL) flight from Manila bound for Cotabato City was diverted to the Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) about half an hour after it left the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) on Thursday, reportedly due to problems with the aircraft’s airconditioning system.
Citing reports from the Airport Operations Center, MCIA information officer Mary Ann Dimabayao said that the Boeing 737 of flight PR2959 experienced problems with “pressurization” en route to its destination.
“It was something about the air condition. (They had to divert the flight) because it would have been really hot inside the airplane,” she told Cebu Daily News.
The aircraft left NAIA at 9:40 a.m. and was expected to arrive by 11:10 a.m. at the Awang Airport in Maguindanao.
Lawyer Kirby Abdullah, one of the passengers of the plane, told the Inquirer that the plane “suddenly dropped” to a lower altitude 30 minutes into the flight, which forced the pilots to make an emergency landing on Mactan.
“They said (in onboard announcement that) it’s the aircraft aircondition system that malfunctioned; but it seems to me that the engine uncontrollably shut down in midair,” Abdullah said.
The flight had to be diverted to MCIA where it landed at 10:58 a.m.
Dimabayao said the aircraft left MCIA at 3:58 p.m. after repairs were made on its airconditioning system.
The MCIA information officer shrugged off rumors that the diversion might have been caused by terror threats in Mindanao, adding that the flight would not have pushed through later in the day if that were the case.
CDN sought Philippine Airlines for a statement, but had not gotten any comment as of press time.
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