Man opens plane emergency exit after mistaking it for handrail

Thinking the door handle was a handrail, the passenger pulled it to steady himself as the plane was preparing for take-off.

Man opens plane emergency exit after mistaking it for handrail

A Chinese passenger has been detained for opening the plane’s emergency exit after mistaking the handle for a handrail.

The 42-year-old man reportedly pulled the handle to unlock the door as the Urumqi Airlines flight to Zhengzhou, Henan, was preparing for take-off at Urumqi Airport in Xinjiang on Saturday (Mar 14) evening.

When asked to explain his action, the man said he “thought it was a handrail like those on the bus”, and was using it to steady himself.

He added that it was his first time sitting next to an emergency exit and was shocked that the door swung open.

Airport staff managed to fix the door and the flight took off at 6.49pm, after a half an hour delay.

The man was detained for ten days for causing disturbance on an aircraft.

This latest incident follows a series of similar cases of Chinese passengers opening aircraft emergency doors.

Last month, a man was detained for opening an aircraft's emergency exit while passengers were boarding the jet at Nanjing Lukou International Airport.

And in December, a Chinese passenger deployed a plane’s the emergency slide “to get off the plane quicker”, while another opened the emergency exit “to get some fresh air”.


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