AN Air Zimbabwe flight between Harare and the Tanzanian capital Dar es Salaam was involved in a five-minute mid-air turbulence that left passengers shaken on Tuesday.
According to a passenger who was aboard flight UM438, there were chaotic scenes in the plane, as they feared the worst.
BY RICHARD CHIDZA
“Air Zimbabwe had a very terrible turbulence an hour after take-off. The plane shook like it was about to break up into two. People were crying and praying everywhere in the plane, it was a frightening moment that I will never forget,” the passenger, who declined to be named, said.
“Thanks to the experienced senior pilot Captain Chidzikwe, who took control of the plane. It could have been the end of me and my family. We were on board UM438 ‘Mbuya Nehanda’ from Harare to Dar es Salaam that had been delayed by more than an hour due to technical issues. The flight was supposed to depart at 12pm, but only did so at 13:08, an hour later than scheduled.”
Air Zimbabwe board chairperson Chipo Dyanda refused to comment on the matter.
“That is an operational issues. We deal with policy issues. Please get in touch with management,” she said.
In a ministerial statement on Tuesday, Transport minister Joram Gumbo admitted to Parliament that the national flag carrier was experiencing equipment problems, adding government was in the process of sourcing new equipment to improve the airline’s operations.