Canada Air Transat blames 'factors beyond our control' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga

02:35  10 august  2017
02:35  10 august  2017 Source:   CBC

'You can't do this to us': Fuming passengers stuck on planes for hours call 911

  'You can't do this to us': Fuming passengers stuck on planes for hours call 911 Passengers on two Air Transat flights were stuck on planes at the Ottawa airport for hours on Monday after being diverted due to stormy weather, and at least two of them called 911. Air Transat flight 157 from Brussels was scheduled to arrive in Montreal at 3:15 p.m. ET Monday, but was diverted to Ottawa after circling east of Montreal due to thunderstorms.The flight landed at the Ottawa airport just after 5 p.m. ET, after more than eight hours of flying time.It then sat on the tarmac for six hours, and passengers weren't allowed to get off. Laura Mah, who was on board, spoke to CBC News as they waited.

Air Transat is blaming "a confluence of factors beyond our control " for the lengthy delay of international Flights 157 and 507, both of which were diverted to the Macdonald-Cartier International Airport on July 31 due to bad weather in Montreal.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . 2 more suspects arrested in killing of Ottawa teenager. Accused human trafficker turns herself in to Ottawa police.

Emergency crews surround an Air Transat flight that sat for hours at the Ottawa airport on Monday night. © Stephane Beaudoin/CBC Emergency crews surround an Air Transat flight that sat for hours at the Ottawa airport on Monday night. The airline that left passengers stranded on the Ottawa airport's runway for hours last week says it tried its best to get them back in the air — but workers failed to give its two planes proper refueling priority.

Air Transat is blaming "a confluence of factors beyond our control" for the lengthy delay of international Flights 157 and 507, both of which were diverted to the Macdonald-Cartier International Airport on July 31 due to bad weather in Montreal.

The airline's defence is found in the legal response it filed last Friday to the Canadian Transportation Agency, which has announced it will hold an inquiry into what went wrong that night.

How 911 dispatch responded to Air Transat passengers at Ottawa's airport

  How 911 dispatch responded to Air Transat passengers at Ottawa's airport Audio from paramedic dispatchers is shedding light on how emergency crews handled 911 calls from passengers stranded on the Ottawa airport's tarmac Monday, after their flights were diverted from Montreal due to bad weather. The recording, provided by Broadcastify, covers about 25 minutes, from the paramedic call centre first dispatching crews to the Ottawa International Airport, to a final report back from one of the paramedics who went to the scene.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . 2 more suspects arrested in killing of Ottawa teenager. Accused human trafficker turns herself in to Ottawa police.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . Doctor reprimanded in 'death by 1,000 laxatives' case.

The agency made Air Transat's response public Wednesday afternoon.

Hundreds of passengers were prevented from leaving the two planes after they touched down at around 5 p.m. in Ottawa last Monday.

One passenger, Laura Mah, told CBC News that food was being rationed, the cabin temperature was steadily rising, and people were being given almost no information about what was going on.

The situation became so desperate that at least two passengers called 911.

Air Transat's timeline

Air Transat's legal filing contains the airline's own timeline of the events that transpired that day, starting at around 4 p.m. ET when crews were told that passing storms had closed the Montreal airport.

The two planes assumed a "standard holding pattern," and were at one point mistakenly told that the Montreal airport had reopened, before touching down in Ottawa an hour later.

Cardinals president to the rescue for Kurt Warner’s stranded family

  Cardinals president to the rescue for Kurt Warner’s stranded family <p>Former Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner will be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame this weekend in Canton, Ohio.&nbsp;</p>Nothing could go wrong, right? Well, the one thing that could get in the way is an issue with a flight.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . How Canada secured the release of ailing pastor imprisoned in North Korea. Canadian co-author of U.S. climate report says findings 'flatly contradict' Trump administration read comments audio.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . 2 more suspects arrested in killing of Ottawa teenager. New.

Both planes were then told to park on one of the airport's runways. At that time, about 20 to 30 other aircraft had already been diverted to Ottawa's airport, Air Transat said.

The two planes shut down their main engines and switched to auxiliary power units to keep the lights on and onboard ventilation systems in operation. However, the high temperatures, plus the number of passengers on board, meant temperatures steadily rose to above 23 C, Air Transat said.

Crews tried to get permission to refuel while on the runway, the airline said, but their requests were turned down. There was also a "critically-high demand" for air stairs, which could have allowed passengers to leave the plane, and ground power units, which could have kept the plane cool, the airline said.

"In total, both aircraft held on the runway with no ground support whatsoever for approximately 90 minutes," said Air Transat. "Deplaning in the above circumstances was therefore a physical impossibility."

Air Transat files response in stranded Ottawa airplane saga

  Air Transat files response in stranded Ottawa airplane saga Air Transat has replied to allegations that it breached its responsibilities by preventing passengers from getting off two planes stuck on the Ottawa airport's runway for hours — but for now, the nature of that response remains a secret. The airline had until 5 p.m. ET today to respond to the Canadian Transportation Agency, which launched an inquiry this week into the July 31 debacle at Ottawa's Macdonald-Cartier International Airport.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . How Canada secured the release of ailing pastor imprisoned in North Korea. New.

Air Transat blames ' factors beyond our control ' for stranded Ottawa passenger saga . Nova Scotia doctor disciplined in 'death by 1,000 laxatives' case. North Korea releases imprisoned Canadian pastor.

Other planes jumped the queue

More than two hours after the planes arrived at the airport, Air Transat crews were told that refueling would soon be underway — but according to the airline, the delays continued.

While they waited, other planes that had landed before Flights 157 and 507 touched down had refueled and taken off, said Air Transat. Eventually, Flight 157 ran out of fuel and its auxiliary power units shut down. Soon afterwards, one passenger called 911, Air Transat said.

It was only then, said the airline, that air stairs were hooked up so that emergency crews could get in to the cabin.

At around 9 p.m., four hours after the two planes touched down — and "after practically all other diverted flights had been refueled" — the two planes finally got their fuel, the airline said.

Flight 507 was then able to take off, but "fuel starvation" caused problems with Flight 157's onboard systems. It wasn't until six hours after it landed that 157 was able to go "wheels up," Air Transat said.

Ottawa International Airport Authority spokeswoman Krista Kealey told CBC News that all refueling services are provided by 'third-party' workers under contract with the airport — not airport authority employees. © Giacomo Panico/CBC Ottawa International Airport Authority spokeswoman Krista Kealey told CBC News that all refueling services are provided by 'third-party' workers under contract with the airport — not airport authority employees.

"Per the above, Air Transat submits that a confluence of factors beyond our control led directly to our inability to minimize the weather-related diversion delays of the affected flights, deplane passengers from stranded aircraft and provide minimal levels of comfort to our passengers onboard," the airline concluded in its response.

Airports pay millions for extra security as passenger wait times grow

  Airports pay millions for extra security as passenger wait times grow Ottawa has been chopping the budget of CATSA for years, leaving the agency unable to offer air passengers security-check wait times that meet international standards. The Liberal government has chopped another $10 million, prompting at least two airports to spend millions to supplement the poor service.The international airports in Toronto and Vancouver have each signed contracts with the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) that give them additional screening resources, even as the agency absorbs another cut in its budget this year.

blog 'billyhands.blogdetik.com' is not exists. Beyond Growth: The Economics of Sustainable Development epub pdf txt.

blog 'maryhunt.blogdetik.com' is not exists. TQFC Book 2: Aerial Control epub pdf txt.

Public hearings scheduled

Some of the claims in Air Transat's response fly counter to what the Ottawa International Airport Authority said following the incident.

At the time, the authority said there was both a gate and air stairs available, and they were prepared to bring supplies beyond just bottled water to the stranded passengers — but never received clearance from Air Transat.

Air Transat staff were also "uncommunicative" that night, the authority said in its initial statement.

In an email Wednesday, airport authority spokesperson Krista Kealey told CBC News that refueling services are offered by "third-party fuel providers" who are not employees of the airport.

Kealey also said that any airline that diverts to the Ottawa airport would be charged $2,000, plus an additional $3,000 if they decided to allow their passengers to disembark and use the airport's terminal.

The Canadian Transportation Agency has now scheduled a public hearing into the stranded passenger saga to take place Aug. 30 and Aug. 31 in Ottawa.

If it finds Air Transat did not abide by the terms of its international tariff — a document that sets out its obligations to its passengers — the CTA could order the airline to financially compensate the passengers on board the two planes.

The inquiry will not tackle "broader questions" about tarmac delays at Canadian airports, but rather the specific events that took place July 31 at the Ottawa airport, the CTA said.

Read Air Transat's response here:

Ottawa inks education deal with First Nations .
OTTAWA - The federal government says it has reached a self-governance agreement with 23 Ontario First Nations, the largest such deal of its kind in Canada.&nbsp;The agreement with Anishinabek Nation First Nations, the culmination of more than 20 years of negotiations, grants communities greater control over education on reserve from junior kindergarten to Grade 12.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!