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Rats on board ground two SriLankan flights

27 Feb 2024 - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}      


  • Only 20 aircraft operational, three grounded

By Yohan Perera   

Rats were found on board two SriLankan Airlines  aircraft on Sunday, forcing the authorities to delay flights, SriLankan  Airlines Chairman Ashok Pathirage said yesterday.   

 “We had to spray a chemical to two aircraft in which rats  were found and ground them for one day as per the international  standards,” Mr. Pathirage told a discussion which was held at Ports,  Shipping and Aviation Ministry.   Two other aircraft had to be delayed due to technical defects,” he added.   

Minister of Ports, Shipping and Aviation Nimal Siripala  then questioned as to whether any investigation was done to determine as  to how the animals managed to creep into the aircraft.   

It was also revealed that the absence of 15 ground handling  staff also caused the delay. Three members of staff have applied for  leave on Sunday, while the remaining 12 have kept away from work  casually. “Sack those who kept away from work without applying for  leave,” the angry minister said.   

Mr. Pathirage said there are only 20 aircraft in the  Srilankan Airlines fleet while three aircraft have been grounded. “We  are to purchase five A 330 Aircraft, but that has become an issue with  the global demand for aircrafts and because of Sri Lanka’s economic  situation,” he said.