Placing the safety of its passengers first, South African Airways (SAA) has grounded several planes following concerns about its maintenance programme, SAA spokesperson, Tlali Tlali, said on Tuesday, 22 October 2019.
Tlali, however, assured the passengers that there was no need to panic because the flag carrier had everything under control.
According to Tlali, the grounding was done by operating an amended flight schedule, following a decision to recall some of its aircraft to undertake compliance verification in line with the South African Civil Aviation Authority’s (SACAA) requirements.
“The decision to recall the aircraft follows an oversight inspection conducted by SACAA at SAA’s maintenance subsidiary, South African Airways Technical,” he said.
Tlali added that the inspection conducted by SACAA was in accordance with its regulations and was a necessary exercise to ensure compliance and safety of its passengers.
Due to the scheduling changes, some flights would operate later than usual. In this the SAA has implemented its contingency plans to ensure business continuity, the official said.
“While there were only four domestic flight cancellations, SAA took steps to combine flights and deploy bigger aircraft to accommodate affected passengers. This has significantly reduced the impact of the inconvenience on the customers,” he said.
In spite of the remedial measures, SAA has apologised for the inconvenience caused to its customers and passengers, adding that the airline would continue to update the public on the situation on an ongoing basis.