New Delhi: Hundreds of passengers were left stranded at the Indira Gandhi International airport as flight operations were hit adversely on Thursday morning with Delhi waking up to dense fog which delayed over 100 departures. The backlog, officials said, is expected to clear by late afternoon as visibility improves.
According to the officials from the airport, CAT III low visibility procedures had to be implemented around 6 AM as the runway visual range recorded visibility as low as 50 meters. The low visibility affected flights scheduled to depart from the Delhi airport between 6 AM and 7 AM. The delay affected close to 100 fights including those scheduled later in the day. However, the officials said, none of the incoming flights needed to be diverted to any other airport because of poor visibility in Delhi, officials told CNN-News 18.
“It was only for an hour that visibility remained as low as 50 meters. Runway closure was not required as it didn’t dip any further. No flights were cancelled at the Delhi airport due to fog on Thursday. The delay that was caused because of poor visibility and is expected to normalize by afternoon as the visibility improves,” an official said.
Since flight operations are low due to the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, the number of flights affected also remained low.
Another officer from the airport said they have put in place special arrangements to minimize inconvenience to the passengers who have been stranded due to flight delays. “We have enhanced the seating capacity in waiting areas inside terminals, marshals have been deployed to manage traffic during fog, additional counters have been set up at immigration, real-time flight updates are being made available inside terminals and airlines have been told to deploy sufficient staff to deal with passengers,” the officer said.
Many airlines also took to social media to update flyers about the delays.