An airliner full of Israeli tourists was evacuated of passengers Tuesday night at a Bucharest airport moments before takeoff, as a fire broke out.
The passengers' cabin became filled with smoke, causing one man to sustain a smoke inhalation injury that necessitated his hospitalization.
After the fire was extinguished the passengers at first refused to return to their sits, but airport staff finally convinced them to do so and the plane took off.
The website of the Ben Gurion Airport notified a chartered flight of the Romanian carrier Ten Airways that was set to land at 2.45 am will instead land at 4.30 am.
One of its passengers told Ynet that "when we were boarding the plane I saw blazes at one side of the plane, and we felt a strong smell emanating from it.
I told an attendant I'm not going on that plane and I took my daughters off. Then an inspector arrived and took everyone off the plane. There was fear it might explode."
"Everyone was pulled out hysterically," the witness further added. "One of the passengers lost consciousness and was evacuated to a local hospital.
There are some 200 Israelis here who are waiting to depart to Israel, and we're waiting with no apparent solution in sight. No one tells us what's next."
The witness then said the problem was fixed. Another passenger told of a number of people suffering smoke inhalation injuries who were treated on the spot by medical staff.
Another bout of panic broke out as airport crew offered the Israelis to board the plane after the problem was repaired.
However, airport staff said they could provide an alternative arrangement to those who do not wish to fly the plane, though they assured everyone the problem in the engine starter was completely repaired.
Finally, the majority of the passengers accepted the assurance of airport officials and boarded the plane.