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Qatar Airways staff abandoned passengers after emergency landing

Qatar Airways staff abandoned passengers after emergency landing

Qatar Airways tweeted: “very shocking”, and they meant Portugues authorities treating passengers this morning after an emergency landing. of flight QR708 Doha- Washington.  Chaos for Qatar Airways flights inflight, onboard and after the emergency landing at a remote Portuguese airbase in Azores, Portugal. A non stop flight operated by Qatar Airways from Doha, Qatar to the U.S. Capital Washington Dulles International airport was cut short at a Portuguese military airport in Lajes, Azores . The plane was traveling from  Doha to Washington Dulles this morning and the flight turned into a nightmare for passengers. Chaotic scenes played out at Lajes airbase after a Qatar Airways passenger plane was forced to make an emergency landing in this morning’s bad weather over the Azores.

The aircraft became unstable after severe turbulences over the Azores and landed with passengers injured.  Chaotic scenes played out at Lajes airbase after the emergency. Portuguese authorities left non US and non European passengers on their own; Qatar Airways staff or Qatar Airways representatives were no where to be found and abandoned the situation.

The story was covered by a journalist travelling on the plane, who described how it suddenly lost altitude, sending passengers “flying into the air, hitting the ceiling and landing in the aisles”.

“A three year old Lebanese boy flew out of his seat, and landed across the aisle into the lap of an Indian man who held him”, wrote Al Jazeera journalist Azad Essa, who described the turbulence as “horrific”.

ptSIC television news reported that “at least 10 people” needed medical assistance.

But the worst of the situation appears to have been the way people were treated on the ground.

“We are told Americans can leave to hotel”, Essad tweeted. “Rest need visas. Almost causes a mini-riot”.

“Very angry scenes here” he continues. “Passengers upset that Qatar Airways staff abandoned them”.

The airline then joined the tweets, saying it was “securing visas” for all concerned – but Essad was clearly not impressed, saying people had been left high and dry. There was “no food, no information” and “no compassion” for the elderly or children.

With Terceira island also described as not on his bucket list, Essad was taking no prisoners: Qatar Airways’ response to the situation was “pretty shocking”, he told his followers.

eTN reached out to Qatar Airways, but public relations and relevant customer service phone lines were not answered and no email responses were received.

This situations opens the question of how a country should handle unexpected emergencies. Portugal today failed.

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