A Citilink aircraft, flight number QG-944, on the Cengkareng-Batam route had to make an emergency landing at Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Airport, Palembang.
The unplanned landing was due to a child removing the protective cover of the emergency exit lever.
“Regarding the information circulating, we can inform you that the incident was caused by a child passenger who was sat in row 11 on the flight. This was done by removing the protective cover for the emergency exit lever or the emergency exit handle cover outside the supervision of this child’s parents,” said PT Citilink Indonesia VP Corporate Secretary and CSR Diah Suryani.
Following the incident, the flight officers took action by making an emergency landing at the nearest airport and performing technical checks related to the condition of the aircraft.
“The cabin crew on duty has taken action according to the procedure by immediately informing the captain of the incident. The captain then decided to divert the flight to the nearest airport to technically check the condition of the aircraft and ensure the aircraft was in a safe condition, in order to ensure flight safety and security,” Diah continued.
Citilink’s flight operations will continue to run as normal.
“The cabin crew immediately asked for information from the child’s parents. The child’s parents were also questioned by the competent authorities upon landing at Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Airport, Palembang,” she added.
The plane had landed safely in Batam. Diah emphasized that Citilink carried child passengers with permission and recommendations from the COVID-19 Task Force team at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, Tangerang, by checking documents first.