At Bengkulu in Sumatra, a Sriwijaya Air flight was delayed for an hour after passengers protested over of the smell of durian inside the passenger cabin. In some Asian countries, Durians are banned from public transport and hotels because of their pungent smell.
A journalist with Indonesia's Antara news agency who happened to be on the plane reported that several passengers began arguing with flight attendants and almost came to physical blows. Passengers then exited the aircraft refusing to fly unless the durian was removed. The airline eventually agreed to offload the sacks of durian fruit from the cargo hold and the flight departed an hour later than schedule.
Sriwijaya's management later released a statement justifying the airline's decision to carry the fruit, even though it had removed the load: "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."
According to abc.net.au¸ Indonesian aviation expert Gerry Soejatman ridiculed one passenger on Twitter who reportedly complained that the fruity load posed a safety threat.