Toronto

Passengers wait 6 hours at Pearson after planes' wings collide

Passengers on a Pakistan International Airways flight say they "didn't feel anything hit or any sort of impact" when their plane clipped the wing of an Air France jet as it taxied toward a Pearson International Airport gate on Tuesday night.

'People were very fed up,' Pakistan International Airways passenger says

Syed Akbar, a Pakistan International Airlines passenger, waited over six hours for his luggage.

5 years ago
Duration 0:12
Syed Akbar was a passenger on the Pakistan International Airlines flight which clipped the wing of a parked Air France plane at Pearson airport, Tuesday when it taxied to a terminal 3 gate. He says he is disappointed with how the airline handled the incident. 0:12

Passengers on a Pakistan International Airways flight say they "didn't feel anything hit or any sort of impact" when their plane clipped the wing of an Air France jet as it taxied toward a Pearson International Airport gate on Tuesday night.  

"At the time I didn't know that the wings had touched," said Syed Akbar, a passenger on the Pakistan International Airways flight involved in the collision.

Air France flight AF351 was parked at a Terminal 3 gate when the tips of the airplanes' wings touched around 6 p.m., said Greater Toronto Airports Authority spokesperson Natalie Moncur. ​

No one was injured, Moncur told CBC News, but the minor collision frustrated hundreds of passengers who endured long-wait times while investigators dealt with the issue.  

Frustration turned to anger, passenger says

After the Pakistan International Airways flight PK789, landed from Lahore, Pakistan, Akbar says it took around 45 minutes for the crew to make it to the gate and open the jetway.  

"I thought it was just conveyer belt issues," he added.  

When passengers were finally allowed to disembark, Usman Sherazi, who was also on the flight, told CBC News "the real fun began once we arrived at the baggage hall" and airline staff told customers their baggage would be arriving soon.  

The passenger's comfort has to be taken into consideration as well.- Usman Sherazi, PIA passenger

"The frustration started turning into anger," he said. "People were very upset. There were kids crying all over. People were very fed up.

"What really bothered me was there was hardly anybody who was telling us what was happening."

Sherazi and Akbar waited over six hours for their bags to be unloaded.

Akbar says he took his wife home to their house in Toronto before returning to collect his luggage, which still wasn't available. 

"Everyone's frustrated... and they don't know who to kind of blame for it," said Akbar. "A lot of people are saying the airlines, but I guess accidents happen and the investigation has to happen." 

Sherazi is disappointed in the way the airlines handled the incident.  

"The passenger comfort has to be taken into consideration as well," he said. "These things happen, I can understand that, but when these things happen their response should be a little bit better." 

Outbound flights delayed and cancelled

Other passengers departing from Pearson endured long wait times, too. 

The incident took place at Pearson International Airport's Terminal 3. (Twitter/JetstreamPhotog)

Muhammed Shahzad was supposed to be on the 10:05 p.m. Pakistan International Airways flight PK790 to Lahore with his parents, but the incident involving the Boeing 777 aircraft delayed the flight until Wednesday afternoon. 

Shahzad said his family was sent home by airline staff without being provided with a hotel service because of their proximity to the airport.  

Air France flight AF351, bound for Paris, was also cancelled.

The GTAA says the Transportation Safety Board has taken over the investigation. 

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