Friday, February 05, 2021

Toy chopper creates flutter at Surat airport

Surat: A remote-controlled toy helicopter was found close to the runway area which created a flutter at the Surat international airport on Wednesday morning. So much so that flight operations were also halted for sometime.

The toy, around 10 cm in length, was recovered by the security agencies from the operational area to the runway on Wednesday.

The airport authorities have filed a complaint with the city police seeking investigation into the source of the helicopter. An incident report has also been sent to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the Airports Authority of India (AAI).

RN Patel, police inspector, Dumas police station said, “The helicopter seems to be damaged. Prima facie it looks like someone was flying it from a high-rise building and due to heavy wind, it might have come inside the operational area.”

Sources said that the helicopter was sighted by a construction labourer working at the site of the terminal expansion project in the morning. The site is located close to the runway and Air Traffic Control (ATC) was immediately informed.

Airport director Aman Saini told TOI, “On Wednesday morning, the ATC got a message that some drone was sighted in the operational area, but when it was checked, it was found to be a small helicopter toy. Police was informed about the recovery and investigations are on”

Saini added, “ATC took all actions as per the standard operating procedure (SOP). Nobody has seen the helicopter flying in the operational area. It is a small regular toy and is about 10 cm in length.”

ATC officials immediately sent the security jeep for inspection as per procedures and after getting clearance, the flight operations were resumed normally.

05/02/21 Times of India

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