Friday, October 13, 2023

Pro-active approach by aviation ministry, DGCA, AAI reduced flight disruptions during fog period: Scindia

A proactive approach by the civil aviation ministry, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) as well as the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has led to a significant decline in flight cancellations and flight diversions during the fog period, Union Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said on Friday. This is despite a 22 per cent increase in the number of aircraft movements in the past two years, the Minister for Civil Aviation said at the Consultative Committee meeting of his ministry on Friday.

The period between December 10 and February 10 each year is usually considered as the fog period in India. The meeting chaired by Scindia was also attended by his deputy V K Singh, members of Parliament, and officers from the Ministry of Civil Aviation, DGCA, AAI and other related organisations, according to an official release.

In 2021-22, 124 flights were cancelled out of 1,36,374 total aircraft movements, which amounted to 0.09 per cent rate of cancellations, which declined to 86 cancellations for 1,66,927 total aircraft movements in 2022-23, or 0.05 per cent, as per the release. Similarly, in 2021-22, a total of 58 flight diversions took place from the eight main fog-prone airports, which declined to 14 in 2022-23, the ministry said. The minister said fog is a weather phenomenon generally confined to a few thousand feet above the ground level, contributing to poor visibility below 1,000 metres, mostly but not limited to northern parts of India during winter and affects flight operations.

During fog conditions, visibility deteriorates due to the presence of water droplets and dust in the layer of air close to the ground. Scindia said every year DGCA undertakes an exercise to ensure that airlines and aerodrome operators take actions to prepare themselves for fog conditions well in advance so that disruptions and services in terms of flight cancellations and diversions are minimised. Towards this end, DGCA engages with all stakeholders to check on the readiness of the required support systems on ground and the operators in terms of aircraft availability and trained crew for operations in CAT II/III conditions.

13/10/2023 PTI/Moneycontrol

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