Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Bird-hits, rains disrupt flights

Bird-hits, rains disrupt flights

DH News Service

BANGALORE:Even as the BengaluruInternational Airport (BIA) atDevanahalli completed its third day ofcommercial operations on Monday,trouble of a different kind descendedon the aerodrome disrupting take-offsand landings over the weekend.

Two bird-hits were reported in thelast two days, affecting flightmovements, Airports Authority ofIndia (AAI) sources at the ATC tower in BIA toldDeccan Heraldon Monday.

The first bird-hit was reported at the new greenfield aerodrome on Sunday and the second on Monday.

“The vicinity of the airport being a vast open space full of lush greenery,is home to thousands of birds. The trouble is more in morning hours when these birds, after roosting, fly across flight paths, obstructing aircraft movement. Thankfully, they were minor incidents that did not affect the aircraft,”said the sources.

Bird-hits could hamper aircraft movements and lead to delay in arrival and departures if left unchecked, cautioned aviation experts.

AAI officials said using ultrasound devices to scare off birds in minor incidents to shooting birds in extreme situations could be adopted by BIA.

“A wildlife controller has been designated to control the menace of stray animals,if any,or birds entering the airside,”explained BIAL officials.

Besides, the runway, taxiways and apron would also be inspected four times a day to ensure they are kept clean and are clear of stray animals, foreign objects or unauthorised persons or vehicles.

The heavy rains that lashed the City over the weekend also delayed aircraft arrivals and departures. AAI sources said a few flight arrivals were delayed as the parking bay was full.

“The affected airline had to be redirected to make a second landing.It was an instance of ‘missed approach’. Pilots are informed about the parking bay slots/numbers to landing airlines. It was occupied by other aircraft resulting in the delay,” explained the sources. BIA is equipped with 42 parking bays including rapid exit ways for aircraft,with eight aerobridges and can handle 720 aircraft movements a day (30 during a peak hour).


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