Saturday, December 01, 2018

GoAir flight diverted for IAF’s ‘extended training’

Pune:  A flight from Delhi slated to land in the city at 10.45am was delayed by over two hours because it was diverted to Mumbai, leaving 176 passengers on board aghast.

A source said the flight landed in Pune after 1pm. An official of GoAir said the movement of the Indian Air Force (IAF) in the Pune airspace was the reason behind the flight’s diversion.

A passenger requesting anonymity told TOI, “The plane had almost reached Pune when an announcement was made that the flight had to be diverted to Mumbai for some unforeseen circumstances. It was a day wasted because I had a meeting slated with my client at noon. I had to reschedule it for Friday.”

A GoAir spokesperson said, “The Delhi-Pune flight (G8 173) was diverted to Mumbai because of the IAF movement in the Pune air space. Anticipating that there could be a delayed landing, the crew decided to divert the flight to Mumbai for refuelling as a safety measure. The flight took off from Mumbai at 12.30pm.”
The city airport’s runway remains closed between 8am and 10.30am for the IAF’s daily practice sessions from Sunday to Friday and from 11am to 5pm on Saturday. Around 10 flights arriving to Pune between 9am and 12pm were delayed on Thursday. The departures, too, were affected.
When apprised of the GoAir flight delay on Thursday, an airport official said, “The IAF had extended its training but didn’t take any NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) in advance.”
30/11/18 Joseph Taylor/En Bullettin
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