By The Jakarta Post
Asia News Network
Antara reporter Boyke Ledy Watra, who happened to be on the plane, reported that several passengers argued, occasionally almost coming to blows, with flight crew members before deciding to leave the aircraft.
Sriwijaya Air eventually decided to unload sacks of durian from the baggage compartment and the flight eventually departed around 11.40 a.m., an hour later than the scheduled takeoff.
Sriwijaya Air senior corporate communications manager Retri Maya released a statement in response to the reports, justifying the airline’s decision to carry the durian despite its decision to eventually unload the strongly smelling but popular fruit.
“It’s not illegal to carry durian in a flight as long as it is wrapped properly in accordance with flight regulations—carried inside the hold. Many airlines do this,” she said in a statement on Tuesday.