Saturday, August 24, 2013

Boy Survives in Aircraft Wheel-Well from Benin to Lagos

A 13-year –old boy sneaked into the undercarriage compartment of Arik
Air Flight WS 544, known as the wheel-well and hid himself there and
survived a 35-minutes flight from Benin to Lagos and on arrival at the
Murtala Muhammed Internatonal Airport, he was arrested by aviation
security operatives.
The boy, Daniel Ohakhena, was said to be in the midst of two other
boys who ran into the airside from the nearby bush and wereplaying
around the aircraft when the pilot came in to take off.
Seeing the boys, the pilot was said to have told the control tower to
ask the security operatives to chase the boys away but Daniel was said
to have hid himself in the undercarriage compartment, where the tyres
go in when the aircraft takes off and without the knowledge of the
"object in the aircraft", the pilot took off and arrived at Lagos
A source who spoke to THISDAY said, "When the pilot was ready to take
off, he saw three children playing around the aircraft, so he asked
the control tower to come and chase the boys away.
The person the pilot spoke to assured him that the boys had been
chased out of the place without knowing that one of the boysstayed
behind. The boys were seen at about 300 metres of the runway.
The pilot did not notice anything when he engaged power and tookoff."
Spokesman of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Yakubu
Dati, confirmed the incident , saying the agency was investigating
its veracity as he noted that because of the difficultyin surviving in
the undercarriage compartment which is usually very cold, the agency
must ensure that it got detailed facts about what actually happened.
He also disclosed that the boys were found to be the children of the
members of staff of the agencies that work at the airport, so they
live around the airport, adding that it would be extremely difficult
for people outside to have access to the airport.
What may be confirmed later is how they boy was able to survive in the
wheel-well which at high altitude of the aircraft can be as cold as
minus five degrees; although industry operatives said he might have
survived because of the short duration of the flight which was about
35 minutes.
Also pilots and aeronautical engineers familiar with the wheel well
compartment said it is roomy enough to contain a human being, but it
is highly unlikely that any one who hid there would come outalive
after a flight that took several hours due to lack of oxygen.
Many persons who had hid themselves in the wheel well of aircrafthad
died, killed by cold, but this boy survived.

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