An aircraft operated by Nigeria’s domestic IRS Airline hit a truck as it taxied for take-off at the country’s main gateway Murtala Mohammed International Airport in Lagos Wednesday, but none of the 91 passengers on board was injured, the airline said.
IRS Managing Director Yemi Dada, who confirmed the incident in a statement, said it happened as the aircraft was taxiing around 7.48 a.m.(local time) for take-off on a trip to the northern city of Kano, via the nation’s capital, Abuja.
He said the truck involved belonged to the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).
”While taxiing on the taxi way, the aircraft captain observed a FAAN truck in a ditch. There were no marshallers around and neither was there any marking to indicate that it (truck) encroached into the taxi way. There was no notice to air men (NOTAM) issued to that effect as well,” Mr. Dada said.
He said the Captain of the plane continued on his taxi and the wing tip of the aircraft hit a protrusion from the truck toward its rear.
”This made the Captain to request for a return to the ramp (air side) from the tower and also notified the tower of the incident and the danger posed by the truck. The passengers were disembarked and re-accommodated on another aircraft which departed Lagos at 10:15 a.m.,” the statement said.
IRS said the incident had been reported to the regulatory Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), and that the airline’s management would be awaiting clearance from NCAA to effect necessary repairs on the aircraft.
In a similar incident in July, a passenger plane belonging to Nigeria’s largest domestic carrier, Arik Air, hit a Nigerian Air Force plane while taxiing for take-off at an airport in the northern city of Jos, causing serious damages to both planes.