Most disruptive day ever at KIA: 102 flights delayed, 8 cancelled

Most disruptive day ever at KIA: 102 flights delayed, 8 cancelled
In what has turned out to be the worst week ever for morning operations at the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) here,  281 flights were delayed and 25  others cancelled during peak hours owing to fog.

On Saturday, the airport faced arguably its worst delay ever, as 102 flights were delayed  and eight others cancelled as the operations were suspended  from  4.58 am until 8.23 am.

Out of the eight cancelled flights - all of the low-cost airline IndiGo - four were arrivals and as many departures. Out of the 102 delayed flights, there were  44 arrivals and 58 departures.  

International operations were also affected. Out of the four flights that were forced to take  a diversion, two international flights - one of British Airways and another of Oman Air  - were diverted to  Chennai.  A domestic flight of IndiGo was diverted to Hyderabad while a cargo flight of Bluedart was diverted to Chennai.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has set up visibility requirements for landings and take-offs. The runway visual range (RVR) should be  400 metres for take-offs and 550 metres for landings.

Earlier this week, there were two major delays at the KIA. On December 24, 96 flights were delayed and eight others cancelled. On December 26, there were 83 delays and nine cancellations. The airport even had to miss the weekly maintenance of runway this week owing to the fog.  

In the winter of the 2016-17 financial year, operations were delayed 17 times. Usually, the fog phenomenon takes over the city in the winter, starting in November and lasting until late February. This year, in a span of just two months, there have been 10 delays.  The fog-related delays cause a lot of inconveniences as they are most prevalent in the morning hours that witness the highest passenger load during the day.

According to the DGCA, passenger traffic at the KIA was down 1% in November on a month-on-month basis. The airport witnessed a passenger load of  18,11,126 people in November, compared with 18,22,596 in October.  

 

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