Korean Air low cost subsidiary Jin Air ended up returning to their origin airport in Cebu after the crew noticed one of the doors wasn’t closed – 40 minutes into the flight!
The aircraft was already at 10,000 feet altitude when passengers and crew close to the door noticed a sound which was likely exhibited by the open door and the flow of air.
You can read more of the story at the Korea JoongAng Daily (access here).
A Jin Air flight bound for Busan was forced to turn back half an hour after takeoff from the Philippine resort island of Cebu on Sunday morning because one of its doors was not fully shut.
A public relations officer from the low-cost carrier said that the 16-year-old Boeing B737-800 passenger plane left Mactan Cebu International Airport at 1 a.m., turned around 30 minutes later and arrived back at the gate at 2:10 a.m. with no trouble landing. The plane was flying 10,000 feet above ground, nearly one-third its normal horizontal flight path, with 163 passengers onboard. No one was injured.
Without specifying if anyone had alerted the crew about the malfunction and when, the source from Jin Air only said that “there was a sound” near the front left door and that “flight attendants and people near that zone were aware” something had gone wrong.
Although some passengers complained about feeling nauseous during the return, no one was hospitalized upon arrival back in Cebu, the source added. An inspection on the door at the airport “found no gaffes in the door itself,” according to the source, adding that “it shut properly when staff members made another attempt.”…
The passengers remained in Cebu until boarding a new flight at 3:50 p.m. that was scheduled to arrive at Gimpo at 8:55 p.m. Their arrival in Korea was delayed by nearly 15 hours.
This sounds like quite an ordeal for the passengers even though the air at that altitude is breathable.
In the meanwhile Travel + Leisure (see here) reported that Jin Air provided a mediocre compensation to the passengers.