A rescue expert has strongly condemned the Zambia Airports Corporation for conducting hoax plane crashes saying a plane crash is not something joke about.
On Thursday, soldiers, police officers, the Red Cross, emergency service providers
and Lusaka residents were made to look like fools when they rushed to Chamba valley fearing that South African Airways plane had crashed. It later transpired that the Zambia Airports Corporation was conducting ‘training’ in a residential area.
Among those that were fooled were officers from the Zambia Army, Zambia Police Service, Fire Department, the Civil Aviation Authority and Ministry of Health.
“There is no plane crash, it was just a drill by the Zambia Airports Corporation to check our preparedness to such emergencies. When we rushed to the ‘scene’, we just found something burning,” Lusaka Province deputy commissioner of police Edwin Bwanga said when contacted.
After fooling everybody, Zambia Airports Corporation Limited managing director Robinson Misitala said he was impressed with the preparedness of the country in responding to emergencies such as plane crashes.
Mr Misitala said the quick response by the Zambia Army, Zambia Police Service, Fire Department, the Civil Aviation Authority, Ministry of Health and the media is commendable.
But a rescue expert said it was wrong for the Zambia Airports Corporation to play with the idea of planes crashing. The officer from the Zambia army said that one day there will be a real plane crash and no one will turn up to rescue people thinking it is one of those Zambia Airports Corporation jokes and people who would otherwise be rescued will end up dying as rescuers will only realise that it is a real crash too late.
The rescue officer said in other countries, there are designated places outside residential for such trainings because, according to him, even is such training, an accident can occur and the plane used for training can actually crash and injure people.
The officer said the Zambia Airports Corporation should find a better way to kill their boredom instead of playing with plane crashes because when a plane crashes, people die.