Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin shaking hands with the Captain of flight MH192, Nor Adam Azmi Abdul Razak at KLIA. - Bernama
SEPANG: Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein praised the pilot of a troubled Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight that made a safe emergency landing at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) early Monday, saying he had discharged his duty in a professional manner.
"The passengers, despite being tired, expressed their admiration for the pilot's skilful handling of the aircraft in making the emergency landing safely without any harm to the passengers.
"They voiced this when I met them and they are most thankful to the pilot," he told reporters at the KLIA Flight Management Building here.
Also present at the press conference was the pilot, Capt Nor Adam Azmi Abdul Razak, and several crew members.
Flight MH192, which departed for Bengaluru (Bangalore), India, with 159 passengers and seven crew at 10.09pm Sunday, suffered a landing gear malfunction upon take-off and turned back to KLIA. It landed safely at 1.56am.
Hishammuddin had met the passengers at the KLIA satellite building soon after the emergency landing.
He also instructed MAS to prepare a report on the incident for the ministry and the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday.
"Although MAS is under Khazanah Nasional, we want a comprehensive report by Wednesday.
"This is because there have been many incidents involving MAS, including the disappearance of Flight MH370. The report has to be handed to my ministry and the Cabinet," he said.
As the press conference ended, pilot Nor Adam Azmi and co-pilot Prakash Kumar declined to be interviewed by reporters and left with Hishammuddin into an office in the building.
The Flight MH192 episode drew global reaction, especially from netizens, as an air turn back by a MAS flight had come not long after the disappearance of the Kuala Lumpur-Beijing MAS flight, MH370, on March 8. That flight had also reportedly made an air turn back.
Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, left the KL International Airport at 12.41am on March 8 and disappeared from radar screens about an hour later, while over the South China Sea. It was to have arrived in Beijing at 6.30am on the same day.
A multinational search was mounted for the aircraft, first in the South China Sea and then, after it was learned that the plane had veered off course, along two corridors - the northern corridor stretching from the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to northern Thailand and the southern corridor, from Indonesia to the southern Indian Ocean.
Following an unprecedented type of analysis of satellite data, United Kingdom satellite telecommunications company Inmarsat and the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) concluded that Flight MH370 flew along the southern corridor and that its last position was in the middle of the Indian Ocean, west of Perth, Australia.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak then announced on March 24, seventeen days after the disappearance of the aircraft, that Flight MH370 "ended in the southern Indian Ocean".
Meanwhile, a passenger from Penang who declined to be named said the emergency landing was well coordinated.
"The pilot and crew members followed procedures correctly. It was well handled and I did not panic," he said, adding that he had not informed his family members yet of the incident.
Meanwhile, Australian Miranda Jason Juse, 30, said that due to the professional action of the pilot and crew, all passengers felt calm during the four hours that the flight circled above the Strait of Malacca.
"The pilot was doing his best for a safe landing and the aircraft landed completely softly. It was calm once we landed safely," he said.
All the passengers were relatively lethargic after the 'ordeal' but they still had the strength to give reporters a smile, appreciative of the fact that they were safe. – Bernama