SIA group chief apologises over Scoot incident

Singapore Airlines (SIA) group chief executive Goh Choon Phong has apologised after oxygen masks were deployed on a Scoot flight from Singapore to Taipei on Sunday as a precaution.

There were 178 passengers on the flight.

Scoot, the budget arm of SIA, said yesterday that the pilots on Flight TR996 had switched on a back-up power unit to prevent an overweight landing caused by excess fuel. This led to a slight loss of cabin pressure.

While the safety of the flight was not compromised, the pilots decided to deploy the oxygen masks as a precaution, Scoot said.

"We acknowledge that this precautionary measure by our pilots has caused anxiety and inconvenience to our passengers and, for this, we apologise," Mr Goh said.

"We would like to take this opportunity to thank our passengers for their patience and understanding."

In its statement, Scoot also thanked the authorities and ground partners at Taipei's Taoyuan International Airport for their assistance.

On Sunday, oxygen masks were activated during the plane's descent. In a video posted by one of the passengers on the flight, the pilot could be heard telling passengers to pull down the masks to activate oxygen flow.

ADDRESSING PASSENGERS' ANXIETY

We acknowledge that this precautionary measure by our pilots has caused anxiety and inconvenience to our passengers and, for this, we apologise.

SINGAPORE AIRLINES GROUP CHIEF EXECUTIVE GOH CHOON PHONG, referring to how pilots on Scoot Flight TR996 caused cabin pressure to drop by switching on a back-up power unit.

A female passenger who was travelling with an infant said that her child vomited during the descent.

There were no other reports of injuries or major discomfort, a Scoot spokesman told The Straits Times on Sunday.

On Tuesday, Scoot said it would be retraining the pilots who operated Flight TR996, after they made some "procedural decisions" that contributed to the slight loss of cabin pressure.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 28, 2019, with the headline 'SIA group chief apologises over Scoot incident'. Print Edition | Subscribe