Passenger on domestic Indian flight trapped inside toilet for almost 1 hour after door lock malfunctions

He was rescued after the plane landed in Bengaluru, where engineers boarded the plane to break open the door.

Ruth Chai | January 21, 2024, 03:54 PM



A passenger aboard a domestic flight in India was trapped for almost an hour in an aircraft lavatory after the toilet door lock malfunctioned.

He was rescued after the 105-minute-long flight landed at Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru, where engineers boarded the plane to break open the door.

According to The Indian Express, the incident took place on SpiceJet flight SG-268. It took off from Mumbai at around 2am on Jan. 16.

What happened

Shortly after takeoff, the passenger from seat number 14D went to the toilet, but became stuck inside as the door lock malfunctioned.

Videos of the incident showed the door handle locked at an awkward angle.

In an interview with the Times of India, the man said that he "realised something was wrong with the lock" as he tried to open it.

The crew were alerted to the incident after hearing the man's calls of "distress". The crew then tried opening the door multiple times from the outside, but to no avail.

"It was getting scarier every minute," the man said.

An air stewardess then slipped a note under the door to the passenger, requesting him not to panic.

"Sir we tried our best to open the door, however we could not open. Do not panic, we are landing in a few [minutes], so please close the commode lid and sit on it and secure yourself. As soon as the main door is open engineer will come. Do not panic," the note read.

When the flight landed at around 3:42am, engineers boarded the plane and broke the door open, freeing the passenger.

Airline issued an apology

SpiceJet said in a statement that they issued an apology and a full refund to the passenger, The Indian Express reported.

“SpiceJet regrets and apologises for the inconvenience caused to the passenger. The passenger is being provided a full refund," the airline wrote.

The airline also said that their crew had provided "assistance and guidance" to the passenger, and claimed that he had received "immediate medical support" when he was freed.

No medical assistance was offered: passenger

However, the Times of India reported that the passenger said he did not receive any medical checks or assistance after the flight.

He stated that he was merely handed a bottle of water and offered apologies after he was rescued.

"I was traumatised, dazed and injured as I was thrown around inside the toilet as the plane landed in Bengaluru. There was no medical assistance at all," the man said.

He claimed that he had been "thrown around" in the lavatory and "suffered injuries" as a result.

"When I came out, I had bruises, and my vision was blurred for a while," he said.

Despite the ordeal, the man received no medical help after being rescued, and was allegedly sent home by SpiceJet staff despite his requests to lodge a formal complaint with a nodal officer from the airline.

The man added that he intended to sue the airline and lodge a formal complaint, declining the monetary compensation that the airline had offered him.

Top photo via Aman Gulati and Shiv Anoor/X