Two Tonnes Of Smelly Durian Fruit Temporarily Grounds Flight After Passenger Complaints

Indonesian Plane Delayed For An Hour Over Freight Of Stinky Fruit

Stinky fruit causes plane protest

The situation inside the cabin reportedly became so bad that passengers and crew nearly came "to blows", according to The Jakarta Post, citing a report from an Antara news reporter who was on the flight.

Passengers disembarked the Sriwijaya Air flight, bound for Jakarta from Bengkulu on Sumatra Island, after complaining that the odour in the cabin would make flying unbearable.

Passengers soon began leaving the cabin to mill about on the tarmac, refusing to board the flight until the source of the stench was removed, the publication said.

Reportedly, passengers referred to a 2005 Mandala Airlines plane crash in Medan, where 149 people were killed - and a 2.7 tonne load of durian was initially thought to be the cause of the accident.

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Some passengers even argued that apart from the unpleasant smell, they were also concerned by the extra weight on board.

"Durian is not classified as a hazardous material to be transported on a plane", Abdul said.

The Sriwijaya Air flight departed for Jakarta at about 11.40 am, an hour later than scheduled. "I yelled at the other passengers 'Who on this plane wants to fly?'" he said.

Despite the fact the passengers were victorious, the airline's management later defended their decision to carry the controversial cargo.

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The airline admitted it was carrying more than two tonnes of the smelly ware but insisted they posed no danger to the flight and that the smell would go once the aircraft was in the air.

"It's not illegal to carry durian in a flight as long as it is wrapped properly in accordance with flight regulations - carried inside the hold". In some Asian countries, Durians are banned from public transport and hotels due to their pungent smell.

Bengkulu airport staff said they would review procedures regarding transport of durian to avoid passenger discomfort in the future.

He added that other passengers started complaining and some even nearly "physically clashed with crew members".

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