Ajit Singh stresses on fog management at airports

Last Updated: Wed, Nov 07, 2012 14:52 hrs

New Delhi, Nov 7 (IBNS) Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh has asked the concerned authorities to take all necessary steps in advance to meet eventualities arising out of fog during the winter season particularly at the airports in North India.

He has specially instructed that the passengers should not be put to unnecessary inconvenience and flight cancellations should be minimized without compromising safety.

He has said that the passengers should be provided timely information, food and beverages etc. in cases of flight delays.

Singh has also advised Airports Authority of India (AAI) and other concerned authorities to make use of the best available technology for smooth navigation and landing of aircraft during fog.

Following instructions from the Minister, Director General of Civil Aviation on Wednesday took a meeting of all stakeholders to review the fog preparedness at the Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi and other north Indian airports.

It was attended by representatives of Airports Authority of India (AAI), scheduled domestic airlines, foreign carriers, DIAL, Indian Meteorological Department and CISF.

The meeting considered the measures being taken with regard to airside, terminal-side and kerbside preparedness.

The DIAL representative made a presentation on the preparations made by them to meet the contingency during fog period.

AAI has also informed that they have issued instructions to alternate airports near Delhi to prepare for fog situation.

All the stakeholders have been advised on the following issues:

. Airlines should ensure that adequate number of CAT III trained pilots is available to operate flights to/from Delhi during fog.They should reschedule the flights of non-CAT-III compliant aircraft (ATRs, Q400, CRJs) during the fog period.

. Meteorological information for passengersshould be displayed on FIDs. It should be updated every 15 minutes.Weather information on IGI Airport should also be displayed on prominent news channels.

. Airlines should provide information to passengers about delays/rescheduling/ cancellation of flights in advance through SMS/email/phone, etc.Airlines should also provide information to DIAL on flight status for updating the same on FIDs.

. All construction work should be stopped near the operational area at IGI Airport. AlsoAAI should not undertake any construction work on the alternate airports at Jaipur, Lucknow, Amritsar, Ahemadabad, Varanasi etc. during the fog period that may affect aircraft operations.

. After the fog situation improves, priority should be given to diverted flights. ATC should sequence the aircraft and give clearance for take-off based on the start-up request to avoid congestion.

. Ground infrastructure would be augmented at alternate airports during fog.

. Airlines must ensure that passengers are provided basic amenities along with provision of food at alternate airports in case of diverted flights.

. Airlines should position a senior level officer at IGI Airport during the fog period for passenger facilitation.

. Contingency plan should be drawn regarding continuous serviceability of Met equipment during fog.

. To avoid any misconduct/violence on the part of passengers, CISF should provide necessary help to the airlines.

On their part Airlines assured that they will take all necessary steps to deploy CAT III trained pilots in adequate number, promptly provide information to passengers on delays, diversions and cancellations and will make necessary provision for food, beverages etc.

It was also decided that DIAL will hold daily evening meetings of all stakeholders during the fog period to review the situation during the day and plan for the next day's operations.

It was informed by the Meteorological Department that anticipated period of fog during 2012-13 at the IGIA, Delhi will be from December 10 to February 10.

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