Shots fired at Air France A330 in Congo, flight AF4145 postponed

Eliyahu Yosef Parypa

On April 11, 2020, Air France Airbus A330 was shot at and left with bullet holes in Pointe Noire Airport (PNR) in Congo. Following the incident, an outbound flight AF4145 ‒ a repatriation flight organized amid the COVID-19 outbreak ‒ was postponed for 24 hours, until a replacement aircraft arrives.

Air France Airbus A33-200 was fired at from a firearm in Pointe Noire Airport (PNR) in Congo. The aircraft, registration number F-GZCK, arrived in Congo from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (OCD), France, on a flight AF373V at 17:05 on April 11, 2020.

At the time of the incident, the aircraft was parked at a stand. There were no passengers onboard. The assault weapon was identified as a PMAK rifle, used by the Congolese Armed Forces, Les Echos reported citing information provided by the Gendarmerie. The shooter has been arrested.

The aircraft involved in the incident was scheduled to operate a flight AF4145 from PNR back to CDG via Bangui-M’poko International Airport (BGF), Central African Republic, repatriating some 220 French citizens from central Africa amid the global COVID-19 pandemics.

The return flight initially due to takeoff at 10 am on April 12, but has been postponed until the following day, until a replacement aircraft arrives. “The flight scheduled for 10:00 am was postponed for 24 hours in order to allow a replacement aircraft and a crew to be transported from Paris CDG,” Air France revealed via social media.

“Customers have been warned and taken care of by our local teams,” the airline’s announcement also read. “The safety of our customers and our crews is our top priority.”

To replace the damaged aircraft, Air France has already sent out a Boeing 777-200 ER (registration number F-GSPG). The airliner took off from CDG to PNR at 11:45 on April 12, carrying out a flight AF380V.

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