During the early hours of Monday, Flyscoot pilots recieved a smoke warning from the automated trigger system in the plane's cargo. Flight SCO 567 carrying 170 passengers had its scheduled departure from Trichy Airport in Tamil Nadu at 1.30 am on Monday, and was on its way to Singapore. The flight was expected to land at 8.30 am in Singapore. However, just a few hours into its journey, pilots recieved the trigger warning. Immediately they checked for grounding in Chennai International Airport, following which the aircraft landed in the airport’s cargo area.
Flyscoot, a Singaporean budget airline owned by Singapore Airlines, operates aircraft from Singapore to China and India.
A team of 60 firefighters were ready on the ground when the flight landed in Chennai at 3.41 am. No mishap occurred while landing and the passengers were ushered into safety by 4.50 am. A source from the airport has informed TNM that the passengers have been lodged at a hotel and an alternate aircraft will be arranged for their travel to Singapore. The airline says that preliminary probe shows it could have been a false alarm.
The airline said in a statement, "Scoot flight TR567, operating Tiruchirappalli-Singapore on 20 May 2019, diverted to Chennai International Airport, as a precaution, due to a cargo smoke warning trigger. The aircraft landed safely in Chennai at approximately 3.41am local time. The aircraft has been grounded for investigations and preliminary assessment indicates a false warning. Scoot will mount a replacement flight to Chennai, subject to regulatory approval, to transport customers back to Singapore. The flight will depart Chennai on 20 May 2019 at 3.30pm local time. Hotel accommodation and meals have been arranged for customers in Chennai.
The safety of our customers is of Scoot’s highest consideration. We apologise for any inconvenience caused."
Scoot currently flies to eight cities in the country – Amritsar, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kochi, Lucknow, Tiruchirappalli and Thiruvananthapuram. Its daily non-stop flight services to Thiruvananthapuram from Singapore was recently initiated and it was also announced that the airline intends to withdraw operations from Lucknow from next month owing to weak demand on the route. While it currently operates three flights a week from Lucknow, operations will be suspended after June 29.
The airline also plans to start operations from Coimbatore and Visakhapatnam in the country.
Other destinations outside India where Scoot suspended its functions due to weak demands are the main airport to Philippine resort island Boracay; Quanzhou in China's Fujian province and Male, the capital of Maldives.