SINGAPORE - Budget airline Scoot issued a statement on Tuesday apologising for its recent flight delays, and explaining that the disruption was mainly due to a technical fault.
Scoot flight TZ8 to Perth was delayed for more than 22 hours last weekend, much to the ire of its passengers. The flight was originally scheduled to depart from Singapore at 12.10pm last Saturday but got rescheduled to 9.50am on Sunday, before eventually taking off at 10.42am.
Scoot's chief executive officer Campbell Wilson said in the statement that the principal cause of the disruption was a technical fault experienced when flight TZ220 arrived at Hong Kong on Friday morning.
"Initial attempts to resolve the issue failed and, ultimately, a spare part and team of engineers had to be dispatched from Singapore."
"With a small fleet and one aircraft out of action in Hong Kong a number of flights were rescheduled, including Saturday's TZ8 from Singapore to Perth."
A "tyre issue" was also detected during checks prior to flight TZ8, requiring a wheel to be changed over three hours, Mr Wilson added.
"Regrettably, this new delay meant that the operating crew could not complete the flight in their legal duty time and were obliged to stand down but, because of earlier rescheduling of flights, no standby crew were available. Consequently, TZ8 was delayed overnight until a new, rested crew was available."
Mr Wilson also said that hotel accommodation is "not assured" in the event of a flight disruption, and that travel insurance is "highly recommended".
"These conditions are made known to and are acknowledged by every passenger at the time of booking," he said.
"The safe operation of our airline is paramount and will not be compromised. Occasional technical issues nonetheless happen, to any airline, and the smaller the fleet, the larger the effect on schedules."
Flight TZ221, which was supposed to depart from Hong Kong at 7.10am last Friday, was also rescheduled to 7pm the following day.
Mr Wilson pointed out that Scoot chose to provide hotel accommodation in Hong Kong to passengers on TZ221, as well as lounge access and food and beverage vouchers at Changi Airport to those on TZ8. Compensation vouchers were also given to guests on both flights, he said, adding that Scoot is reviewing the handling of these two flights to refine its processes and procedures.
"We again apologize to those affected, assure them that their safety was at the core of our actions at all times, and commit that we will learn from this experience."