One of the passengers who did not reveal his name said that the incident occurred on Tuesday barely 35 minutes into the 55 minutes journey.
According to the passenger, the flight W3304 to Accra on a Dash 8 NextGen propeller aircraft, left Lagos at 7.20pm, but not up to 35 minutes into the journey, the passengers began to panic as thick smoke began to envelop the cabin.
To the chagrin of the passengers, the oxygen masks, which were supposed to aid breathing for passengers in critical emergencies were not in working condition.
This further threw the passengers into a frenzy as the cabin crew merely gave the passengers toilet tissues to cover their nostrils to improvise.
The passenger dished the details
“I started perceiving something smelling like a burning stuff. Shortly after the guy sitting next to me asked if I perceived any smell of burning stuff and that confirmed my worst fears.
“Before you could say jack, smoke has filled the cabin. The air hostesses were busy scampering around opening the cabins and the lavatories to check if they could trace the source of the smoke without success.
“While that continued, the oxygen masks that were always being advertised during the safety demo prior to take-off couldn’t be released instead we were handed tissue papers to use to cover our noses to minimize and filter out possible carbon monoxide inhalation.”
The passenger complained that about five minutes after the pilot informed the passengers that the aircraft had smoke seeping into the cabin and they could not ascertain where the smoke was coming from.
The passenger stated it was obvious their lives were in God’s hands as everyone prayed to his or her Gods for supernatural intervention.
“To the glory of God, the flight successfully landed by 8.15pm (7.15pm Accra time) to the waiting hands of Ghanaian emergency services at Kotoko International airport, Accra.
“We were evacuated into a waiting bus with instruction to leave everything behind in the cabin. Sadly there was no Arik official to address us neither was there any manner of first aid attention given to the passengers to manage stress and possible elevated blood pressures.
“I’m highly discouraged that this near crash major incident was not reported in the media two days after and I suspect a cover-up by Arik and the authorities. So I have chosen to use the social media to ensure this news gets out,” said the passenger
But, in a damage control attempt Arik Air through its spokesman, Mr. Adebanji Ola confirmed the near-miss accident in a press statement on Thursday night at 11: 12 pm.
Ola in the statement stated that the aircraft, traveling from Lagos to Accra, Ghana, had smoke coming from the cabin which caused severe panic though the captain assured them things were under control.
“The relevant aviation authorities in Ghana and Nigeria have been briefed appropriately on the incident,” he added.