Monday, December 12, 2016

Chandigarh: At airport, the wait continues for upgraded landing system

ON DECEMBER 7, owing to poor visibility, flights at the Chandigarh International Airport remained suspended for an entire day, leading to cancellation of 25 flights, including an IndiGo flight to Dubai. The flight operations, however, resumed partially the next day, but what followed is delay and cancellation of flights almost everyday. On Friday, the airport authority decided to curtail the morning and evening flights, as they couldn’t operate due to poor visibility in the morning and evening.
The reason for the disruption in the air traffic, being witnessed for the last many days, is the poor visibility due to the foggy weather around the airport. The air traffic officials say that most of times the visibility remains 1 kilometre on the runway and the required visibility for flights to operate is 1,200 metres. This is not a situation unique to this year.
The airport’s Chief Executive Officer Sunil Dutt explains that the flights were cancelled and delayed as the airport is not equipped with upgraded instrument landing system (ILS). The airport has currently CAT (I) category ILS which, according to Dutt, is not adequate to help the flights land at the Chandigarh airport during winter season.
Officials say that since the runway is controlled by the Indian Air Force, the upgradation of ILS has to be done by them only, a claim contested by the IAF.
12/12/16 Adil Akhzer/The Indian Express
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