A Ryanair flight attendant is in hospital after tumbling out of a passenger jet during a hurried takeoff in Sweden. Swedish newspaper Expressen reported that the woman fell about three metres onto the tarmac after a rear door was pulled open as she rushed to prepare the plane for takeoff.
“More haste less speed”, an old saying, appears to be appropriate in this case as the flight was delayed for four hours after the accident at Gotenburg City Airport. It happened after the aircraft had closed its doors and the stairs had been removed.
“What made her open the door we don’t know,” Gotenburg City Airport chief executive Annika Nyberg told news agency TT.
“I find it hard to believe that she took a step out, it is more likely that the door flew open while she was holding the handle. It is rather windy today.”
Ryanair head of communications Stephen McNamara issued the following statement: “Ryanair is relieved and pleased to report that the cabin crew member who fell from the rear door of the aircraft in Gothenburg appears to have suffered no injury and is expected to return to work in the coming days. The flight departed with a four-hour delay which Ryanair sincerely apologises to affected passengers for.”
Ryanair’s cabin crew have busy lives and much to contend with. Earlier this year, a Ryanair spokesman told media that crews were expected to keep thin to help cut fuel costs and to stand a better chance of “appearing in the annual Ryanair calendar”. He was referring to “The Girls of Ryanair” a cabin crew charity calendar which appears each year.
Ryanair is an enthusiastic supporter of an airline “fat tax”, under which overweight passengers would be asked to pay more. In March this year, it started charging passengers GBP10 (AUD16) to sit in the exit row. Last year it was pushing a plan to remove toilets to make room for extra seats.
Written by : Peter Needham