Instead of having a frozen popsicle dropping somewhere along the route from Pekanbaru to Jakarta, this story has a happy ending.
A young Indonesian man that had wanted to go to Jakarta sneaked into a landing gear bay at the Pekanbaru airport when Garuda Indonesia flight GA 177 was about to take off. Luckily for him, he was able to survive the flight at the 10,000 meters above the ground without freezing.
Here’s an excerpt from Jakarta Globe (access the full article here):
Authorities at Sultan Syarif Kasim II International Airport in Pekanbaru plan to install CCTV cameras on the runway after a man crawled into the wheel well of a Jakarta-bound Garuda Indonesia flight on Tuesday afternoon.
Mario Steven Ambarita, 22, slipped past airport security and clambered aboard the Boeing 737-800 before it took off from Riau province, surviving freezing temperatures as the plane flew tens of thousands of meters in the air.
Authorities from Roesmin Nurjadin Air Force Base, which shares the runway and airport space with Sultan Syarif Kasim II airport, said they were reviewing airport security following the incident.
Pujobroto said the airplane had been flying at 34,000 feet above the earth surface.
“The temperature at 16,000 feet usually reaches the freezing point so you can imagine what the man must have experienced during the flight,” Pujobroto said.
After receiving medical treatment, Mario underwent questioning by police, whom he reportedly told he climbed on the flight to see President Joko Widodo in Jakarta.
I am glad that this story has a happy ending as these usually turn out bad. It is just terrible that there are people (many) that feel so desperate where they live that they go to extremes and have to endanger themselves trying to move.
The air travel in Indonesia is very affordable by western standards, but still expensive for locals factoring in the wages that they earn.