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An Air India passenger took to social media to claim that she suffered from “second degree burn” as a flight attendant on the Delhi-San Francisco flight spilled hot water on her legs.

The incident took place on the Flight AI173, which departed from New Delhi for San Francisco on September 20. The passenger, identified as Charu Tomar on social media, accused the airline of taking inappropriate measures to address her injury after she raised an alarm. 

“To my shock, the crew members initially ran away from the situation,” she alleged. The attendant’s lack of training and professionalism only added to “my distress”, she said in a thread posted on social media platform X, adding that the crew removed her shoes and socks without checking if it would cause further harm.

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Later, a physician onboard offered assistance, Tomar said. “She diagnosed my injury as a second-degree burn and attempted to provide care. However the flight lacked essential medical supplies, and the treatment was far from ideal I endured severe pain for nearly two hours in flight with no pain medication or proper first aid kit available.”

As the flight approached its destination, “I was left to tend to my injured leg on my own”, she claimed, adding that the crew also did not attend to her aged mother-in-law and 7-year-old son after the landing, despite her request.

“The complete lack of care for my family members and the severe injury I sustained are deeply disappointing. This experience was not only physically traumatic but also emotionally devastating,” she added.

Airline apologises

Air India, in a statement issued today, expressed regret over the incident. While the passenger claimed that hot water was spilled on her, the airline said the crew had accidentally spilled coffee on her leg. It claimed that first aid was “immediately administered” to her.

The crew also “paged for a doctor on board, who attended to the affected guest”, a spokesperson of the private carrier said, adding that “a team of paramedics assisted the guest upon arrival at San Francisco”.

“We have expressed our sincere apologies to the guest, whom our teams have been in touch with to offer all further assistance, including medical care. We have taken serious note of the incident, and will ensure to retrain the crew member on our standard procedures to avoid such an incident in the future,” the spokesperson further noted.

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Updated: 28 Sep 2023, 07:34 PM IST

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