KQ crash, PR lesson

May 5, 2007 at 8:26 pm 18 comments

My pole to the worried and grieving families following the sad news today.

That said, I will still fly KQ anytime, anywhere.

On a separate note, the general PR response to the story by both KQ and the government more than impressed me.

See, in one of my journalism and PR courses during my undergrad days, my class was tasked with the duty of developing a crisis communication strategy for KQ in the event of a hypothetical plane crash outside Kenya.

The late Mr. Jeff Mbure had us sweat over the details, people, events, etc etc till he was satisfied we could do the job real well.

We hoped to God we would never have to put to use what we had learnt and / or done in class; it was gloomy stuff.

But today it happened, and it seemed as though we had scripted our classwork for a day like this.

At least 3 of the people with whom we did the class are now with KQ.

I wonder how it is for them to process all this.


KTN’s 7 O’clock news bulletin reports that Lang’ata MP Raila Odinga has deffered the launch of his presidential vision.

There could not have been a better sense of the moment.

UPDATE:  Both the Sunday Nation and the Sunday Standard are reporting that the launch will go on, after all. I wonder why KTN ran that piece of news in the first place.


Entry filed under: Africa, Jesse Masai, Kenya, Literature, Media, Personals, Society, World.

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18 Comments Add your own

  • […] Analyst is not shaken. He writes: That said, I will still fly KQ anytime, […]

  • 2. Aoko  |  May 6, 2007 at 5:27 pm

    What? When I heard about the crash, I thought, “That’s it, I will never fly KQ again…” It took me a long time to accept that KQ is a good airline (I only did so just last August) so I guess it was easy to shake my faith. Two crashes in 7 years really does not sit well with me. And if I’m not wrong, the Ivory Coast crash happened with a new boeing 737, also shortly after takeoff.

    Why would deferring Raila’s rally be wise?

    God bless.

  • 3. KA  |  May 6, 2007 at 6:11 pm

    @ Aoko – The W. African thingy will do with some looking into….remember the Bermuda triangle?…..Uhhmnn…As for Raila’s rally, I had thought he would be launching his vision in the context of a massive Kenyan loss of lives, hence the remark. But other considerations appear to have carried the day.

  • 4. dave  |  May 7, 2007 at 5:20 pm

    RAila seems to be reading from a guided script.
    He looks a promising man that we can entrust Kenya with.
    Yes indeed! Presidend Raila Odinga.

  • 5. dave  |  May 7, 2007 at 5:23 pm

    Raila seems to be reading from a guided script.
    He looks a promising man that we can entrust Kenya with.
    Yes indeed! President Raila Odinga.

  • 6. ann  |  May 7, 2007 at 5:41 pm

    Speaking of in class PR, just wrote a press release response on behalf of Boeing…this was a test by the way…would hate to be in any of their shoes at this time. No easy job. Too bad KQ faced this, sad so many lives lost…but accidents do happen, fate is what it is. Will still fly KQ or any other airline with the assumption that what can go wrong will.

    As for Odinga, i bet he’s forking hundrends of thousands of shillings for his strategist. He has repackaged himself totally, albeit on the outside, but be warned he remains the same man…always best as a king maker, but not a king. Make no mistake.

  • 7. KA  |  May 7, 2007 at 8:27 pm

    @ Dave – Let the people decide.
    @ Ann – KQ, ditto. Raila, let the people decide.

  • 8. ANGELA WAIRIMU  |  May 8, 2007 at 10:55 am

    they always say it is time for the old to go and give chance to the younger the CEO should not retire, dont know why KQ even gets the Awards – it is permanently delayed on flights the most disgraceful airline in terms of cleaniess and service and the crew are rude and arrogrant how many times have there been complaints – PLEASE GIVE OTHERS A CHANCE this disaster is nothing more than negligence on the part of the KQ management employing half baked professionals dr mutua was more impressive the captain who was brought to explain did not even know how to talk!!! so much so for professionals

  • 9. ebrahim  |  May 8, 2007 at 11:02 am

    Please give us a break a whole CEO does not know the meaning of a basic aircraft instrument the most imprtant part yawa – it was pilot error to fly an aircraft in that weather period – I WOULD NEVER FLY KQ good thing they are having competition – time the award went to other african airlines MATURE ONES

  • 10. Anon  |  May 10, 2007 at 11:03 am

    What could have happened to KQ 507?

    1. Corrupt officials at either or both the Abidjan and Douala airports OVERLOADED the plane.
    People who have flown thru west African airports are familiar with the way airport officials record just half of the weight of your checked in luggage then make you “pay” for the other half directly to them.
    Same goes for hand luggage, where any excess weight is not left behind but “paid” for.
    So the KQ crew might have taken off thinking they are carrying half of what they are actually carrying.
    Add to that INCOMPETENT airport officials, NO RADAR and BAD WEATHER.

    = Next time airport officials let you carry excess luggage take a ‘pause and calmly think about it‘!

    2. Maybe someone is actually not be too happy with Kenya Airways growing that fast in the African Skies.
    Conspiracy theory? Maybe but where there is smoke there is fire.
    Who might want to hurt Boeing? Who might feel that they not KQ should have a monopoly over francophone skies? Who is jealous of KQs growth into Southern Africa? Whose interests might be furthered by such an incidence? Shindwe! 🙂

    Already some are calling for Kenya Airways to CANCEL West African flights…if there is indeed any mystery or foul play…wouldn’t that be the perpetrators whole point?

    = God Bless Kenya!

  • 11. Antony Pius  |  May 10, 2007 at 6:44 pm

    Alot remains to be desired out of the whole damn incident that led to the KQ flight 507.30 seconds 5Km away from the end of the runway takes a whole day/night to locate-anyway together in prayers with the berieved,
    Human strength and effots are limited but the Lord’s is strength and ability is everlasting.

    Looking forward for a more convinving report from the Toronto investigators and the Boeing company officials.
    This is sad yet we need to focua ahead,asetimore!!!

  • 12. Top Kwach  |  May 11, 2007 at 9:35 am

    It has already happened,we need to focus ahead, serious measures need to be put in place to evade such embarrasisng scenario.KQ has been very keen and i appreciate all that the airline does to ensure passanger safety every single hour and daily.
    Yet much still needs to be done to avoid any other occurance,anxiously waitign for the reports,bye!!!

  • 13. Top Kwach  |  May 11, 2007 at 9:37 am

    It has already happened,we need to focus ahead, serious measures need to be put in place to evade such embarrasisng scenario.KQ has been very keen and i appreciate all that the airline does to ensure passanger safety every single hour and daily.
    Yet much still needs to be done to avoid any other occurance,anxiously waiting for the reports,bye!!!

  • 14. Nathan  |  May 11, 2007 at 1:06 pm

    President Kibaki TOSHA… period! Vote in dictators at our own risk!

  • 15. Nathan  |  May 11, 2007 at 1:07 pm

    Further more, we wanna read about KQ PR not politics!

  • 16. Cosmas  |  May 17, 2007 at 10:23 am

    I wish to differ to a posting by Anon on the involvement of corrupt officials in overloading aircraft. Aircrafts are very sophisticated equipment, and one basic thing a pilot need is the load the aircarft has taken which assists him to select the correct takeoff speed. This is automatically done by aircraft instrumentation!! He simply cannot takoff if the aircraft is beyond its maximum loading! Take note of this!!

    Let us also not paint KQ red as I trully believe the airline is doing Africa Pride. I have flown KQ on a number of times on their B737, 777 and 767. I will definately fly them again with pleasure this June. They are very proffesional. The Doualla accident can happen to any airline, let us wait for the results of the official investigations.

  • 17. Obuogo Oduor Collins  |  May 21, 2007 at 2:06 pm

    I want to believe that there is a hidden theme in the KQ crash. That was disastrous. To me terrorism is the main theory..an international airport without a fence? That’s ridiculous! On Raila, he’s the president we’ve been waiting for. A savoiur for our nation Kenya. Away from the atrocism of Kikuyu’s who think that they are the rightful owners of this republic. Raila, majority of Kenyans luv you and those who loathe you are ones who have stolen from the poor or are ambitious to do so and your ascending to leadership would deny them this. Go for it man, you are assured of one vote..mine.

  • 18. N. Mageto  |  September 7, 2008 at 6:32 pm

    The crash was fishy, on the 11 a masonic no. & then on the mnth of May, 07 just lyk the flyt no.


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