Maintenance Works At Mumbai Airport To Hit 225 Evening Flights Daily

Starting from Monday, the primary (9/27) and secondary (14/32 ) runways will remain shut for five hours between noon and 5 pm on November 3,7,10,14,17,21,24 and 28. - Sakshi Post

Mumbai: Airline operations at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) will be shut down for five hours a day for eight days following the runway maintenance works. According to the airport authorities, starting from Monday, the primary (9/27) and secondary (14/32 ) runways will remain shut for five hours between noon and 5 pm on November 3,7,10,14,17,21,24 and 28. The shutdown due to maintenance works is likely to hit 225 flights everyday.

The maintenance works on the primary and the secondary runways will hit airline services as more than 200 flights are likely to be canceled on each day, amounting to 2,100 cancellations in all. While the runways were being shut alternately for a few hours from October 18, both will remain shut for surface work on the mentioned days.

An official spokesperson from Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL), said: “At least 40-45 flight operations are scheduled and managed at the primary runway every hour on any given day. On these days, we expect cancellation of at least 225 flights per day with both runways being unavailable for operation for five hours. As airlines were informed about this beforehand, they have scheduled their operations likewise.”

Passengers those have booked on a flight that is scheduled to depart or land at Mumbai airport on Monday evening, it would be advisable to find out the flight status before leaving for the airport. However, the closure is expected to have an effect on the evening flight schedule, what with air traffic congestion expected post-5pm, said the official.

Monday's closure will be the first of the many partial or complete closures that the Mumbai airport will witness in November. Going by the flights it handles in the afternoon, a total of over 1,600 flights, most of them domestic, are expected to be hit. The maintenance work, which began on October 18, will end by the last week of November and on several days, the runway will be closed in the afternoon. An airport official said that work on preservation of runway surface will be carried out.

The congestion at the airport is alarmingly increasing by the day. To ease out this problem, the government has hired a British agency to find ways to increase the runways' hourly aircraft handling capacity. The UK-based NATS will carry out a study to optimise the use of runways, at the behest of the Union Aviation Ministry.

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