A member of cabin crew for Finnish airline Finnair has been seriously injured after falling out of an open aircraft door at Helsinki airport the carrier has confirmed. The incident occurred early yesterday morning after the Airbus A320 aircraft arrived on stand in Helsinki having just flown in from Oulu.
The flight attendant, who is believed to be a male, fell approximately 3.6 metres to the ground from the rear door of the aircraft. Passengers had already disembarked at the time the accident happened and it is not clear why the door was opened without steps being attached to the aircraft, although some media reports suggests steps had been positioned at the aft door.
At this time there is no suggestion that the incident was anything other than an accident.
Finland’s air accident investigation board, the OTKES, said in a statement posted to its official Twitter account that it had opened a preliminary investigation following a “serious incident involving a cabin crew member.”
The flight attendant is said to have suffered serious injuries including broken bones but those injuries are not said to be life-threatening. Emergency services arrived quickly at the scene and took the crew member to hospital where he currently remains. The aircraft involved continued on to London just over an hour after the accident occurred.
“This is an extremely exceptional and truly regrettable event,” a spokesperson for Finnair said in an emailed statement.
“On Finnair flight AY450 from Oulu to Helsinki 13th January a crew member was involved in a serious occupational accident,” the statement continued.
“The crew member fell from the aircraft back door to the station platform. The employee was seriously injured and transported to a hospital.”
“For privacy reasons we cannot comment further.”
“Finnair takes all occupational safety issues seriously and will investigate the events leading to this occurrence to ensure this will not happen again.”
The incident is reminiscent of an accident involving an Air India flight attendant in October 2018. In that case, a female crew member fell from the open door of a Boeing 777 and in turn sustained a right leg compound fracture, fractures in both heels and soft tissue injury in her chest, abdomen and lower spine.
The veteran crew member had apparently been trying to close the door as the aircraft was readying for departure without any ground equipment attached to the aircraft.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.