Tense moments for Julien Vermote and Serge Pauwels in flight to Amsterdam
Nov 21 2017 01:14 pm CET

Tense moments for Julien Vermote and Serge Pauwels in flight to Amsterdam
Tense moments for Julien Vermote and Serge Pauwels in flight to Amsterdam
Photo of Serge Pauwels by the A.S.O.

Belgian riders Julien Vermote and Serge Pauwels of Dimension Data experienced some tense moments during a flight from Cape Town to Amsterdam after their training camp in South Africa.

Newspaper Het Nieuwsblad reports that the flight was forced to make an emergency landing in Nice, France.

"We suddenly felt that the airplane was descending strongly," Pauwels explained. "The flight attendants had just served breakfast but then quickly took it away. Shortly after, the pilot announced that the smoke sensors in the baggage hold had been triggered and that we would make an emergency landing in Nice.

The KLM Boeing 777 descended with a vertical speed of 1.524 meters per minute. "That's from the top of the Mont Ventoux to Bedoin in one minute," Pauwels aptly compared.

"It was scary. I was seated at the emergency exit so the flight attendant came to sit right in front of me. I heard her praying. For a moment I thought I wouldn't make it to my 34th birthday.

Vermote agreed: "These weren't the most pleasant 15 minutes of my life. And on top of it, Nice has such a short runway near the water."

Het Nieuwsblad adds that the flight did continue to Amsterdam after a delay of about five hours, albeit without luggage.




COMMENTS


Join our team!


Have you always wanted to write about cycling? Click HERE to contact us!
Get the latest cycling news in your mailbox


Enter your email address:

Current races (18 December)



Upcoming races


Recently finished races