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Brace for Flight Disruptions as Delhi, Mumbai Airports to Carry Out Runway Repairs This Winter

Indira Gandhi International Airport is the busiest aerodrome in the country and has three runways. Runway 27/09 would be closed for "preventive repairs" next month while two other runways - 11/29 and 10/28 - would be operational.

News18.com

Updated:October 3, 2018, 8:18 PM IST
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Brace for Flight Disruptions as Delhi, Mumbai Airports to Carry Out Runway Repairs This Winter
File photo of New Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport.
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New Delhi: Flights at Delhi and Mumbai airports – two of the biggest in the country – are expected to be impacted during the winters with runways being closed for maintenance and repairs.

DIAL, which operates the Indira Gandhi International Airport, said that one of the runways will be closed for repair work for 13 days starting November 15.

IGIA is the busiest aerodrome in the country and has three runways. Runway 27/09 would be closed for "preventive repairs" next month while two other runways - 11/29 and 10/28 - would be operational.

The airport handled 63.5 million passengers in 2017-18. The airport has around 1,300 flight movements every day.

In a statement, DIAL said it was planning the closure of runway 27/09 to carry out preventive repairs.

"The works are scheduled to be undertaken for 13-day duration starting from November 15, 2018. This will lower the capacity of IGI Airport by 50 arrivals and 50 departures per day in this duration," a DIAL spokesperson said.

The spokesperson also said these works are essential for safe aircraft operations and to avoid sudden disruptions that cause greater impact due to time required for planning the logistics.

According to an Air India official, around 200 domestic flight departures and arrivals are likely to be affected by the runway closure. A spokesperson for Vistara said the airline has decided to cancel as well as re-schedule some flights during the runway closure period.

The disruptions at Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport will last much longer as both of its runways will remain closed for six hours a day on October 23, and on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays between February 7 and March 30.The closures are expected to impact 276 flights a day.

A Mumbai airport spokesperson said the maintenance work will be done at the intersection of both runways, hence rendering them inoperable. Airlines have said that to accommodate with the capacity crunch, they would reschedule, cancel or combine certain flights together.

The spokesperson added that airlines have been encouraged to bring in wide-body aircraft to accommodate the passenger traffic during operable hours. However, only Air India and Jet Airways operate wide-body passenger aircraft.

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