Passengers create stink over pungent planeload of durian


In April, 600 people were evacuated from the library of the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology - and crews were dispatched to check for gas leaks - after a rotting durian was left inside a cupboard.

"Food writer Richard Sterling has written 'its odor is best described as ... turpentine and onions, garnished with a gym sock'".

According to the BBC, about two tons of the fruit was in the plane's cargo hold.

Durian is considered a delicacy in many parts of Asia but it attracts a lot of negative attention thanks to its "raw sewage"-like smell".

Durian's stench is so pungent it's banned from public transportation, hotels and even planes in certain countries.

But Zidane said that despite the complaints, the pilot had decided the fruit - the smell of which some find nauseating - would remain stored in the cabin during the flight.

"Man, this is a bad smell", Zidane said he told the officer.

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"I yelled at the other passengers 'Who on this plane wants to fly?'". It caused the plane to depart with a one hour delay. "They're all just making a noise".

A journalist with Indonesia's Antara news agency who was on the plane reported that several passengers began arguing with flight attendants and nearly came to blows.

The flight eventually took off around 11:40am local time (04:40 GMT), an hour later than scheduled.

The company then went on to say that it was normal practice for Indonesian airlines to carry durian in the hold, "as long as [the durian] is packed well and enclosed in the cargo according to standard operating procedure".

Amir Zidane uploaded the clip to Facebook after the incident which took place on Monday.

Despite its decision to offload the fruit from the cargo, Sriwijaya Air senior corporate communications manager Retri Maya later released a statement justifying their decision by saying it was "not illegal" to carry durian fruit.

Eventually, they all disembarked the plane while the durian was unloaded.