The pilot was the first to flee the plane after hearing a loud explosion
- A Vueling pilot fled his plane after an explosion and left passengers.
- One passenger told The Sun that the captain fled as soon as the flight attendant opened the door.
- Most of his crew followed him, while only one flight attendant remained to take care of the passengers.
One of the passengers said that the pilot of a passenger plane abandoned all those on board after he was the first to flee the plane after a strong explosion.
Andrew Binion told The Sun he was on a Vueling flight from Barcelona to Birmingham in the UK, when smoke began to fill the plane.
The flight attendants started to panic and hurried down the aisle when the explosion occurred, and one of them warned the captain. As soon as he opened the front door, the captain ran up, followed by most of the cabin crew, Binion told the newspaper.
“It was absolutely shocking. Suddenly there was this massive explosion and the smell of smoke coming from the back of the plane,” he said, adding, “All the lights went out and the emergency lights came on – it was terrifying.”
Binion said the crew did not issue clear instructions to the passengers and that one flight attendant had a “meltdown,” The Sun reported.
“Someone ran into the cockpit to tell the captain. And then as soon as the flight attendant opened the front door, the captain ran straight away. He just went. He was the first to get off the plane.”
Most of the crew also fled. The only remaining flight attendant, Binion said, “began screaming for everyone to get off. The Spaniard next to us translated and said, ‘The plane is on fire.”
He concluded, “We couldn’t believe the captain left us like this – he was running to safety and we were all just sitting there like ferrets.”
The passenger compared the actions of the pilot with the actions of the captain of the Costa Concordia – a cruise ship that hit the rocks off the Italian coast in January 2012.
Francesco Chaetin initially refused to help, but the ship began to sink and he escaped in a lifeboat as the passengers jumped into the water, 32 of whom lost their lives. He is now serving a 16-year prison sentence.
Insider reached out to International Airlines Group, which owns both Vueling and British Airway, for comment.