Bali-bound plane turned back to China mid-flight when crew realizes front door is still open

A plane from the Sriwijaya fleet. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
A plane from the Sriwijaya fleet. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Between pilots testing positive for narcotics and planes missing the runway, there’s hardly ever a dull moment in Indonesian aviation.

The latest fiasco involving a Bali flight is cringeworthy, to say the least.

A flight headed to Bali from Guangzhou had to turn back to China, just 90 minutes into the flight when crew members noticed that the plane’s front door wasn’t closed all the way.

The flight, operated by Jakarta-based Sriwijaya Air, had been carrying 180 passengers and made the ‘u-turn’ on Thursday morning, according to Shanghaiist.

A Sriwijaya official told reporters that indicators in the cockpit inaccurately showed that the door was closed all the way. Clearly those indicators need a check-up. 

Passengers sent back to Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport spent 30 minutes on the ground before re-boarding the plane. But over 20 passengers decided they’d had enough and declined to do so, opting to try and negotiate refunds, according to reports.

Sriwijaya has scored low on safety ratings. currently gives it just two stars—which is an upgrade from its 2015 rating of one star.

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