False ocean landing alarm terrifies British Airways passengers
17 Jan, 2012 17:26
A relaxed trip from Miami to London has turned into a nightmare for some British Airways passengers, after the cabin crew mistakenly activated an emergency water landing alert.
The plane was in the middle of the Atlantic when a recorded message informed passengers that the aircraft was making an emergency landing on water.It took the crew no longer than 30 seconds to realize what a grave error it was, but for the scared passengers, those moments seemed an eternity. “We looked at each other and figured we were both about to die,” Duncan Farquharson, 58, told The Daily Telegraph. “Families with children were distraught and people were in tears. It was very distressing.”“It still makes me very emotional thinking about it now – it was very traumatic,” his wife, 51-year-old Tracey Farquharson, added. Besides the shock, what outraged passengers most was the allegedly easy attitude the crew took after the mistake. “Their tone suggested they had not grasped how seriously we had taken it,” Mr Farquharson said. “They seemed very blasé about it.”The Farquharsons told journalists they were planning complain to British Airways about the way they were treated. A British Airways spokesman claimed that the plane’s staff spoke to passengers individually to reassure them.This is not the first such incident with British Airways. In August 2010, a similar situation took place on a British Airways flight from London to Hong Kong, though the crew blamed it on a computer mistake.