Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Fog: Directorate General of Civil Aviation asks airlines to ensure adequate trained pilots

NEW DELHI: With fog likely to affect flights in and out of Delhi and other cities in North India for a longer period this year, aviation regulator DGCA today asked all airlines to deploy sufficient number of pilots trained to operate air service in such a condition.

At a meeting convened by DGCA, met department officials said the anticipated period of fog during 2012-13 at the Delhi airport would be from December 10 to February 10. In the past few years, foggy conditions have subsided by the third week of January.

The meeting, which reviewed fog preparedness at the Delhi and other north Indian airports, was attended by officials of Airports Authority of India, domestic and foreign carriers, Delhi International Airport Ltd, CISF and the Indian Meteorological Department, an official spokesperson said.

DGCA directed airlines to ensure that adequate numbers of Category-III trained pilots were available to operate flights to and from Delhi during fog.

The airlines were also told that the operations of planes like ATR turboprops, regional jets and Bombardier Q400s, which are not CAT-III compliant, should be rescheduled during the fog period.

The regulator also asked airlines to provide advance information to passengers and provide them with basic amenities along with food at alternate airports in case of diverted flights.

While DIAL representative made a presentation on the preparations and contingency plans during the fog period, AAI officials said they have issued instructions to alternate airports near Delhi to prepare for fog situation.

Construction work, which could affect aircraft operations, should be stopped near the operational area at the IGI airport as well as the alternate airports like Jaipur, Lucknow, Amritsar, Ahmedabad and Varanasi during the fog period, the aviation regulator instructed.

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