Delhi, we have a problem. A rat spotting has disrupted a flight on an Air India Dreamliner – for the 3rd time this month.
The most recent incident took place last Saturday, the Times of India reported, when a rat was spotted 6 hr. into a 787 flight from MEL to DEL. The plane was diverted to SIN and alternate plans were made for getting pax to DEL.
A rat — possibly the same rat — was reported on the same aircraft 2 wk. ago on an AI flight from BHX to DEL, and on 11APR during boarding for a flight from DEL to FRA.
After those 2 sightings, the airplane “was fumigated, laid with rat traps and locked up for several hours,” a source told the Times of India.
With a 3rd rat sighting on the same plane this month, the chairman of the government-owned airline stepped in, conducting an inspection of the facilities at DEL airport and the lift trucks used by the catering companies servicing the airplanes.
AI chairman Ashwani Lohani said airline workers would no longer be allowed to eat meals in areas where aircraft are parked and that the airport had been asked to set space aside for a staff canteen.
This month’s rat-on-a-plane sightings are not the 1st for the Indian carrier. In late December 2015, a flight to LHR returned to BOM after pax spotted a rat on board. And the BBC reported that a rodent sighting caused the return of a flight heading to MXP from DEL last July.