Two SpiceJet pilots have been temporarily suspended from active duty after landing the low-cost carrier’s de Havilland Dash 8-400 turboprop on the wrong runway at India’s Belgaum Airport (IXG).
The incident occurred on October 24, 2021, when the SpiceJet Dash 8-400 turboprop, registered as VT-SQC, was performing daily regional flight SG-3733, which connects Hyderabad and Belgaum. According to the flightradar24.com data, the aircraft took off from Hyderabad Airport (HYD) at 10:17 a.m. (UTC) and was scheduled to land at Belgaum Airport (IXG) an hour later.
Air Traffic Control (ATC) cleared the flight crew to land on runway 26 at the IXG airport runway. Instead, the turboprop touched down on runway 08. Once the aircraft landed, the plane taxied to the apron where passengers disembarked. However, the flight crew reportedly did not notify the airline about the incident and continued to perform the return flight SG-3734 to the HYD airport.
The carrier only received the news after the flight crew returned to Hyderabad.
As the pilots failed to immediately report the incident, the Aircraft Accident Investigation Board of India (AAIB) opened an inquiry to find out more details. The Indian authority is currently investigating the reasons why the flight crew failed to follow ATC instructions and landed the turboprop on the wrong side of the runway. It is also exploring the reasons for the pilots’ failure to report the incident to the airline.
In response, SpiceJet has decided to temporarily de-roster both pilots.