Indonesian authorities have grounded Adam Air’s seven Boeing 737-300s including the one that was damaged yesterday when it landed hard on the airport runway at Surabaya resulting in damage to the aircraft.
The airline’s president Adam Suherman says the country’s aviation regulator, Directorate General of Air Communications (DGAC), has grounded the seven 737-300s.
“They [the DGAC] are holding the aircraft until they check the aircraft. After they check the aircraft and no technical problems have been found they will release the aircraft,” he says.
The DGAC’s move comes after an Adam Air 737-300 yesterday landed hard on the runway at Surabaya airport reportedly causing severe damage to the airline’s fuselage.
Suherman confirms to Flight that the aircraft is a 737-300 with local registration PK-KKV. According to Flight’s ACAS the aircraft was built in 1994 and its owner is AWAS.
Indonesian television stations have broadcast pictures (pictured left) that apparently show the mid-fuselage buckled and the pictures also reportedly show the aircraft’s rear section a few degrees lower towards the ground.
When asked if the aircraft can be repaired, Suherman says it is too early to say as the incident is now subject to investigation by Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Commission (INTSC), which means airline’s personnel are now forbidden from going onto the aircraft or inspecting it.
“The cause of the incident is now subject to investigation by the INTSC but based on the pilot’s report” it was raining and there were strong winds when the aircraft was coming in to land.
“The procedure is to do a positive landing …but [the pilot says] as the wheel was about to touch the ground there was pressure from top that pushed the aircraft down” resulting in the hard landing, he adds.
Suherman says no one on board was injured and that after landing the pilot decided to park the aircraft on the runway and have the passengers disembark.
This meant the airport’s runway was closed for some time and Suherman says the aircraft was later towed away and parked at the apron area.
Adam Air currently has a total fleet of 22 aircraft comprising of 737-200/300/400s.
Suherman says the airline will be taking delivery of an additional six 737-400s on lease this year and still plans to launch some new international services.
Adam Air has earlier said it plans to launch services from Indonesia’s resort island of Bali to Perth in Western Australia.
Yesterday’s incident comes after the airline on 1 January had a 737-400 crash into the sea off the southwest coast of Indonesia’s Sulawesi island resulting in the loss of 102 lives.