COLOMBO: A major incident was averted after alert crew aboard a SriLankan Airlines flight carrying over 200 passengers from Kochi to Colombo extinguished a mid-flight fire triggered by a lithium battery pack, the airlines said today.
Shortly after the meal service on the 70-minute flight, the cabin crew members noticed smoke emanating from an overhead luggage bin.
"Crew members aboard flight UL 166 managed to avert a major incident that is believed to have been caused by the ignition of a lithium battery pack or mobile phones in a passenger’s hand luggage," the airlines said in a statement.
None of the 202 passengers or any of the crew suffered any injuries and the Airbus A330-200 aircraft landed safely at Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) at the scheduled time, the statement said.
The flight crew immediately informed air traffic controllers at BIA and the aircraft was met on arrival by dangerous goods experts, firefighters and other safety related personnel. Since the situation was under control, passengers did not require emergency evacuation and disembarked in the usual manner, it said.
SriLankan Airlines has launched an investigation into the incident.
In October 2016, SriLankan imposed a total ban on the carriage and usage of 'Samsung Note 7' on board its aircraft.