SpiceJet Tapes Over Cracked Boeing 737 Aircraft Window

A passenger has posted a picture of a cracked aircraft window taped over with sticky tape whilst onboard a SpiceJet Boeing 737. The passenger expressed some concern but it didn’t prevent him flying – so he can’t have been that worried. And it appears the posting caused a flurry over nothing much. The crack was on an inner flexi pane that does not bear structural pressurization loads.

spicejet-737-window-crack
A passenger has complained on social media about a cracked window on a SpiceJet flight earlier this week. Photo: Jonathan Payne via Flickr.

Taped up window

According to a report in The Independent, Hariharan Sankaran was on SG8152 from Mumbai to Delhi on Tuesday, November 5, 2019. There is a decent looking crack at his window. The crack was covered with cellotape. No doubt it would raise my eyebrows too. Instead of being, I dunno, normal, pointing out the issue to crew and asking if all was okay with this, Mr Sankaran went all millenial and posted about it on social media.


Mr Sankaran asked it was a major safety concern. Fair enough. SpiceJet responded swiftly. Now, the cellotape might look a little bit B grade but as they pointed out, the crack was on an inner flexi pane that doesn’t carry structural pressurization loads.

In fact, the role of the inner flexi pane is to protect the real window from scratches. The cracked pane was replaced later that day. So it was merely dodgy-looking rather than actually being dodgy. This was pointed out pretty quickly by SpiceJet. Mr Sankaran flew to Delhi and all went well.

Social media frenzy

Mr Sankaran got 235 likes and 201 retweets for his posting – a little bit ordinary for a story that has been widely picked up. When a respondent got all boring and pointed out there was no safety risk, well, that only got ten likes.


But why run with facts when you can do a beat-up. News-18 called the cracked window “a major safety event” and suggested lives were at stake. This, of course, brings out the twits on Twitter who talk about negligence and being sucked out of windows. Except none of this was true

As for SpiceJet, they said;

“Hi Hariharan, at SpiceJet, safety is our utmost concern and at no point in time does the airline compromise on the same. 

“We shall surely convey this to the concerned head for necessary action. The inconvenience caused is regretted.”

“Please be assured that at no point in time was safety compromised.”

Not the window

The Independent goes on to say that airtight windows are a must on any commercial jet. The point remains that the cracked pane wasn’t the window proper.

SpiceJet is receiving some flack for the incident. Its sin appears to be giving the appearance of compromising safety rather than actually compromising safety. Granted, it’s not a great look and it could have been discretely resolved by securing the window shade down (or otherwise covering the window and blocking off the row) prior to operating the aircraft. SpiceJet further compromised themselves but stating that it wasn’t a safety risk and failing to appropriately self-flagellate.

Simple Flying has approached SpiceJet for a comment but has received no response prior to publication.

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Tricia

I’m not surprised in the least! Airlines in Nigeria, China and Mexico perform such scary quick fixes each and every day!

First Officer

Are you Nigerian

Lowflying

You didn’t read the article, did you Trish? Not a “scary quick fix”…

Andy

A crack in the real window would have caused it to shatter long before anyone could have got a roll of tape. It might look alarming but, as the article says, best take such things up with cabin crew before reporting on Social Media. Get the facts before spilling the beans!

Joe Barrett

Simple Flying is just as much to blame for the hype. Look at your own headline!! How’s that for inaccurate reporting?

Joanna Bailey

Somehow “Spicejet tapes over inner flexi pane that does not bear structural pressurization loads” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it Joe.

Christian

Exactly, they want to shame the person who originally posted the pictures but this is literally the type of reporting they do on a daily basis -_-

Tricia

Mr. Lowlife Lowflying, I in fact read the article. It is in fact a so called “Quick fix” for the inner protective, plastic window pane. One would believe that no European, nor US carrier would dispatch an aircraft with such an alarming cosmetic repair. Good day sir!

Dave D

Yes, they would. If the option is to either: A/take the plane out of service to replace the panel and cancel a flight, or B/tape it up, fly the plane in a perfectly safe manner then address the issue overnight, the airline is always going to take option B. Sadly, the customer decided that “going millennial” and posting on social media was the better option. The only safety concern a cracked inner flexi-pane would pose would be someone running their finger on the crack and cutting themselves. Nobody is getting sucked out of the plane, the pressure vessel isn’t compromised.… Read more »

Gerry Stumpe

Yeah. But you said “scary window fix” Trish. And all this name-calling. Really?

Rob

Unfortunately this is an instance where many will bash the airline without any idea that safety was in no way compromised. In a similar situation at a different airline, we taped down the window shade and put a “Do Not Operate” placard on it. You can’t see it, so it’s not there. This kinda goes along with those that overreact about tape being applied to an engine…