LAGOS (Reuters) – A Nigerian teenager hid in the wheel compartment of an airplane and survived a half hour flight to the commercial hub of Lagos from his home town of from Benin, Arik Air said on Sunday.
Daniel Ihekina evaded airport security and snuck into the tire section of the flight just before the wheels went up for take off on Saturday, airline spokesman Ola Adebanji said by telephone.
Passengers spotted him emerging from the wheel cavity in Benin and alerted the staff.
“How he got through security is something for the authorities to investigate,” Adebanji said. “He’s lucky to have survived it. Not many people can do that and survive.”
He said that the plane only went up 21,000 feet because it was a short flight, increasing the boy’s chances of surviving the thinner, colder air at high altitudes.
Adebanji said Ihekina was still being questioned by police and that he said his family had mistreated him.
(Reporting by Tim Cocks; Editing by Louise Ireland)