Passengers Not Abandoned, Thai Airways Boss Insists

(10 September) President
of the Thai Airways? managerial board has denied reports that the passengers had received abysmal
treatment from the airline crew after one of the airline′s planes skid off the runway at Suvarnnabhumi
Airport on Monday.

The plane was traveling from Guangzhou, China, to Bangkok. It is not clear
what caused the accident: officials have not yet established whether it was a malfunctioned gear or
a problematic runway.

Previously, a number of passengers, including some of the 14 injured during the
accident, had complained of crew′s incompetence.

For example, they alleged, the crew abandoned the passengers to take care of the injured at the scene, and once the passengers reached
the terminal there was no official or interpretor to assist them, creating much
confusion.

But the airline president, Mr. Amphon Kitti-amphon, asserted that the crew
had provided emergency services to the passengers according to standard procedures in a timely
manner throughout the evacuation process.

He also said the passengers could only receive
their luggages this morning because they were restricted from removing any belongings from the
aircraft during the accident.

The delay in delivering the luggages out of the aircraft was
due to safety procedures involving different agencies such as the Thai Airways engineers,
officials of Airbus company, and the airport authorities, he said.

You have to understand there are
procedures. Once the plane got in an accident, you cannot just go and open it [for luggages] like a
tour bus, Mr. Amphon said.

He added that the
repair process would take about 48 hours.

As for the damaged Airbus A330, Mr. Amphon said it
was roughly 16-17 years old, and had periodically received check-ups.

Mr. Amphon also said
that the airline board members plan to visit injured passengers as part of compensation packages
from the airline.

The Thai Airway crews also made a public announcement on their official
Facebook page. The crew had followed all the procedures from the International Civil Aviation
Organisation (ICAO), the statement insisted.

Although some passengers complained that cabin
crew left the aircraft first, the statement explained that two of the cabin crew needed to slide
off the aircraft first, in order to be able to insist passengers who slid off the sliding
track.

The statement also claimed that two of the cabin crew stayed behind to check if there was
any passenger left behind on the aircraft, as the passengers complained that the crew left them
stranded at the runway.

The crew, according to the statement, also gave first aid to lightly injured passengers, before transporting all passengers 200 metres away from the
aircraft.

However, as for the complaint that no crew member showed up to handle the
passengers at the terminal, the statement said that the crew were not allowed by Suvarnabhumi Airport to
enter the airport building during the evacuation, and that it was supposed to be the duty of the
ground staff of the airport authorities.

In the end of the statement, the crew offered
sincere apologies to all passengers and wished that future passengers should pay attention to
introductory video for their own safety during their travels.