Video taken by a passenger on-board shows a carry-on luggage covered in flames. A flight attendant promptly throws bottled water at the fire. A passenger joins in by throwing... em, juice at the burning device. They successfully contain the fire within a few seconds.
Photos and videos of the incident were posted on Chinese social media platform Weibo and soon went viral on other platforms.
A fire broke out in the luggage rack of a China Southern airplane in Guangzhou on Sunday after a portable charger carried by a passenger caught fire during the boarding process. The fire was put out promptly. Passengers have been relocated to another plane. pic.twitter.com/8BzNkxh6rg— People's Daily,China (@PDChina) February 25, 2018
According to People's Daily China, the incident happened on a China Southern Airline flight To Shanghai on Sunday. The plane was still in Guangzhou when the power bank caught fire.
Passengers were boarding the flight CZ3539 when smoke and fire were seen coming from a passenger's bag in the overhead bin, Channel NewsAsia quotes a statement posted by the airline on Weibo.
According to the statement, the fire was put out with the help of fire and security departments and there was no further damage or injuries. The passenger who owned the bag was brought in to help authorities in the investigation. According to preliminary probe, the device was not in use when it caught fire.
Passengers were disembarked from the plane following the incident and allocated a new aircraft which took off nearly three hours later, according to information from flight tracking website FlightAware.
On social media, the attendant's firefighting techniques involving water and juice came under much criticism.
The way they handled that was appalling.— Ben Vaughan (@BenVaughan242) February 25, 2018
Where the hell were the Actual fire extinguishers— Deer flip (@hoggy_c) February 25, 2018
They should have used a proper fire extinguisher!— colin mann (@Colin_UK_GB) February 25, 2018
Shocking treatment of the fire! Aircraft involved is shown to be B-2009, a Boeing 777-300ER, which, at least by European CS-25 standards, should be equipped with at least 4 hand fire extinguishers "conveniently located and evenly distributed".— Philip (@CPKDD) February 25, 2018
Defending the flight crew's timely action, the airline said on Weibo that water was the best way to fight a fire linked to Lithium batteries.
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