On Saturday, passengers of an Irish airliner Aer Lingus feared for their lives for several minutes. During a flight from the Swiss city of Zurich to the Irish capital Dublin, for example, they received an announcement that the plane would make an emergency landing at sea. But two minutes later, a call was made to allow passengers to ignore the announcement and not make an emergency landing.
The plane eventually landed at Dublin Airport as planned. “I was in the back of the plane with my son, and we had earphones,” passenger Fergal Oledisha told The Irish Times. According to the man, she heard the following message: “Ladies and gentlemen, this is an emergency. Please prepare for the diving landing.” O’Lidecha is interested in aviation, and therefore knew that “landing by diving” meant that the plane would go into the water.
O’Lidecha explains how the ad received some backlash, possibly because the majority of people were wearing headphones. The passenger made eye contact with a woman who also heard the message. “I can read the concern on her face,” he says. However, the cabin crew remained calm according to O’Lidecha and no one rushed to give directions to the passengers, which the man took as a good sign.
Another passenger went to a flight attendant to ask for more information. “When he came back, he didn’t seem to panic,” O’Lidecha said. “About two minutes later, a flight attendant announced that we could ignore the previous announcement. That was a huge relief.”
An Aer Lingus spokeswoman later confirmed that a pre-recorded advertisement had been incorrectly played during the flight from Zurich to Dublin. And then there was a follow-up message informing passengers of the error. “There was no risk to the safety of the aircraft’s passengers at any time during the flight,” the spokeswoman said.
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