In a sort of a déjà vu for Kingfisher Airlines, the jet blast from a JetLite Boeing 737 damaged the windscreen of one of its ATR aircraft while taxiing at the Indira Gandhi International Airport on Thursday. On May 12, jet blast from a JetLite Boeing 737 had damaged the windscreen of another Kingfisher plane at Jaipur airport, which too was an ATR.
“The Kingfisher ATR aircraft was behind the JetLite Boeing 737 in a queue for take-off. As the latter was revving up its jet engine, the exhaust blast from the engine sent a dust and stones flying towards the ATR’s windscreen and damaged it,” said an airport source. The incident happened at 7.20 a.m. on Thursday and thankfully, none of the passengers were hurt.
The JetLite spokesman didn't take our call despite repeated attempts to contact him and the airline CEO Maunu Von Lueders could not be contacted over the phone either.
“This is the second such incident in less than two months. The windscreen of our aircraft was damaged and had to be pulled out,” said a Kingfisher spokesman.
“Thankfully, it would not take much time to repair in a place like Delhi and we hope to put it back in operation from Friday itself,” he added.
In the earlier incident on May 12 at Jaipur's Sanganer Airport, a JetLite Boeing 737 was moving out of a parking bay and damaged the Kingfisher ATR aircraft parked next to it. The aircraft windscreen got cracked and it had to be grounded
Though a jet aircraft is given minimum power (thrust) while taxiing for a low ground speed and goes full throttle only during take-off, the Kingfisher spokesman said that the JetLite pilot must have given more thrust than what was required at that time, resulting in a strong jet blast.
“This is a violation of Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) rules. A jet engine cannot be given full throttle while one the ground and a jet pilot has to exercise caution while taxiing,” he said.