A Qatar Airways flight scheduled to fly passengers from India to Qatar was diverted to Pakistan’s Karachi after smoke was detected in the aircraft’s cargo hold.
On March 21, 2022, the Qatar Airways Airbus A350-900 aircraft, registered A7-ALZ, was scheduled to operate passenger flight QR579 between Delhi, in India, and Doha, in Qatar. According to the aircraft’s flight history captured on Flightradar24.com, the plane took off from Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL) at 04.13 a.m. (UTC) and was expected to land at Hamad International Airport (DOH) approximately three hours later.
However, as the jet was flying over Khuzdar in the central part of Pakistan’s Balochistan Province, a smoke alarm indicated the presence of smoke in the cargo hold.
“Flight QR579-Delhi to Doha diverted to Karachi (KHI) due to smoke detected in the cargo hold. The aircraft landed safely, passengers disembarked normally, and were served breakfast,” the carrier said in a statement.
The flight crew immediately declared an emergency and decided to divert to the nearest airport. After the incident, Qatar Airways released a short statement confirming that the plane had safely landed at Jinnah International Airport (KHI) in Karachi at around 05.30 a.m. (UTC), where it was met by local emergency services.
The airline apologized for the inconvenience caused by the incident, revealing that passengers were able to continue with the journey on the same day via a “relief flight”.
This is the first incident to involve the Qatar Airways Airbus A350 passenger plane in 2022.