South Korea’s Asiana Airlines has stopped selling some emergency seats following an accident in which a passenger opened an emergency exit mid-air, the carrier said Sunday.
The incident took place onboard a A321-200 plane, which was carrying nearly 200 passengers as it approached the runway at Daegu International Airport, about 240 kilometres (149 miles) southeast of Seoul.
The plane landed safely but several people were hospitalised. There were no serious injuries or damage.
Starting Sunday, the 31A and 26A emergency seats on its 14 A321-200 jets would no longer be offered for sale, the carrier told AFP.
“As a safety precaution, this measure will apply even if the flights are full,” it added.
The man was detained by authorities in Daegu for allegedly breaking aviation security laws. He faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.
The man, in his 30s, told Daegu police that he had wanted to get out of the plane because he was feeling “suffocated” inside the cabin.
He also had been under stress from being unemployed, authorities said.
A nearby passenger captured footage of wind blowing through the open door, with fabric seat-backs and passengers’ hair fluttering wildly as several people shouted in shock.