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Pak flight captain, others asked to explain ‘Overloading’ incident’

Pakistan’s ailing national carrier, PIA has issued show-cause notices to a pilot and two others officials for allowing seven extra passengers on a flight to Saudi Arabia last month in a serious violation of air safety regulations, according to a media report today.

Pakistan International Airlines spokesman Danyal Gilani did not comment on the development, but said separately that: “Disciplinary action has been taken against all concerned officials.”

Capt Anwer Adil, senior purser (air hostess) Hina Turab, and terminal manager Akbar Ali Shah were issued notices for allegedly letting extra passengers travel on jump seats and the cockpit on PIA flight PK-743, Dawn newspaper reported.

The development came after an inquiry committee set up by the airline found the allegations to be true, it said.

The Boeing 777 aircraft has a seating capacity of 409, including jump seats, while flight PK-743 carried 416 passengers from Karachi to Madina on January 20.

“After in-depth investigation… it has been confirmed that passenger[s] travelled on [the] flight are over and above of the aircraft configuration (including jump seats) which is a clear violation of SOP [standard operating procedures] and violation of passenger safety,” says a report signed by Manager Operations Sohail Jaffar Ali.

As per SOPs in cases like these, the report said, the aircraft should be parked again to offload extra passengers “which was not done in this case”, the paper quoted the document as saying.

“Such type of violation/irregularity cannot be ignored in which safety of the passenger[s] is on [sic] stake,” it said.

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