Destinations

Scene of disarray on Moroccan plane after cabin crew 'dispute'

Scene of disarray on Moroccan plane after cabin crew 'dispute'
Trays, bottles and cultery fell on the floor as a Royal Air Maroc (not plane pictured) plane began its descent

Passengers on board a flight from Casablanca to Lisbon in Portugal were reportedly scared to leave their seats as they believed the noise of falling objects was the result of a technical problem with the plane.

According to a report on the forum Crash Aerien, the mess was in fact the result of a dispute between two members of staff, which left airline meal trays and plates scattered along the plane’s aisle near the crew area, just as the aircraft began its descent into Portela airport.

royal-air-marocRoyal Air Maroc says that the service trolley was not properly replaced so its contents spilt during turbulence (Crash Aerien)  Photo: Crash Aerien

It did not give a confirmed reason for the incident, but said that it may have been the result of a difference in the level of training the two had received.

Moroccan news website Yabiladi reported speaking to one witness on the flight, who said that there had been a “verbal dispute” between two air hostesses, but no degeneration into a fight.

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Royal Air Maroc did not immediately respond to Telegraph Travel’s request for comment, but after the incident tweeted: “We rue news reports insinuating a fight between two members of staff on a Casablanca-Lisbon flight. The plates actually fell inadvertently.”

Nous regrettons l'info détournée insinuant une dispute entre PNC sur un vol Casa Lisbonne. Il s'agit de plateaux tombés par inadvertance 1/2

— Royal Air Maroc (@RAM_Maroc) 21 Août 2015

In a second tweet, they added : “We are sorry to all passengers on this flight for the disturbance caused”.

Nous nous excusons auprès des passagers de ce vol pour la gêne occasionnée 2/2

— Royal Air Maroc (@RAM_Maroc) 21 Août 2015

The national airline, which is based in Casablanca, told Yabiladi that there had been no physical altercation, but did not deny there had been a verbal disagreement. “One of the air stewards had forgotten to lock the service trolley away after placing it in the back of the cabin”, a spokesperson said, meaning that slight turbulence caused the plates and cutlery to fall on the floor.

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According to Yabiladi, Royal Air Maroc said categorically that there had not been a “fight”. They added that the flight between Casablanca and Lisbon is very short, and that crew have only 45 minutes to serve passengers. “With the time pressure and all the services they must provide, oversights are possible.”

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In a separate incident, Royal Air Maroc this week denied earlier reports that a plane severely damaged during an emergency landing at Agadir airport was part of its fleet.

A pilot landed the “private jet” at the in south-western Moroccan airport because he could not release the landing gear, according to Morocco World News. No passengers were harmed but the aircraft’s underbelly scraped the ground after the wheels failed to engage.

Royal Air Maroc issued a statement to say that the aircraft in question “did not belong to the national carrier” and said that associating images of its planes with the incident risked harming its image.