A Hawaiian Airlines aircraft experienced a malfunction to a component that affects cabin pressure during an interisland flight to Hilo.
Flight 552 carrying 46 passengers and five crewmembers departed the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu shortly after 7:40 p.m. Monday.
About 20 minutes before landing in Hilo, “a component that affects cabin pressure malfunctioned, causing passengers’ oxygen masks to automatically deploy,” said spokesman Alex Da Silva in an e-mailed statement today.
Following standard operating procedures, the pilot began a controlled descent to a lower altitude while declaring an emergency to coordinate priority handling of the flight.
The Boeing 717 aircraft landed safely at Hilo International Airport at 8:17 p.m.
No injuries were reported.
Da Silva said, “The safety of our passengers is our priority, and we sincerely apologize for this event. We understand this was a very uncomfortable experience, but our pilot’s swift actions were necessary to quickly stabilize cabin pressure.”
Hawaiian Airlines ferried the aircraft to Honolulu where mechanics conducted a thorough inspection and resolved the issue, he added.