Sunday, April 26, 2009

BIA: Flight schedules go haywire

BIA: Flight schedules go haywire
Bangalore, DHNS:

A malfunction in the primary Radar in the ATC (Air Traffic Control) at Bengaluru International Airport (BIA) resulted in as many as 21 inbound flight schedules going haywire early Friday morning.

Sources in the AAI (Airports Authority of India) said the Radar was switched off in a routine scheduled antennae maintenance shutdown between 11.30 pm to 12.05 am for maintenance works on Friday. “But the technicians then called for an extension of the time, which resulted in a few equipment not able to be switched on” added sources. ATC officials then resorted to manual checking of flight arrivals that took 10 minutes per aircraft as opposed to the normal two to three minutes required between two incoming flights.

“All early morning flights into the City were affected upto 11.30 am, when the Radar was finally switched on again.This problem affects almost all airports in the country, where a single Radar handles air traffic, unlike in developed countries. Funds in India are a problem. The AAI has taken a decision to address this issue. Until then we have asked the HAL airport to provide data from there to supplement the ATC at BIA” explained AAI sources. The disruption also resulted in four diversions to Chennai airport. The BIA handles 30 ATM’s (Air Traffic Movements) per hour during peak hours.


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