The low visibility “horror” has returned to the Chandigarh domestic airport even before the onset of winter season.Seven flights on several routes were cancelled after smog, which had engulfed the nearby areas since Monday, brought down the runway visibility below the permissible limit.
No flight is allowed to land or take off below 1,000-1,200 metre of runway visibility at the local airport. As a result, all domestic flights scheduled before 2 pm and those in the evening were cancelled as the runway visibility could not go beyond 600-800 metre during these hours.
The cancellation resulted in a lot of hue and cry at the airport as passengers were seen rescheduling their flights.
Airport officials said more than 600 outbound passengers were affected due to cancellation of flights. A similar number of inbound passengers were also left harassed as they could not land in Chandigarh.
Air India’s Chandigarh-Delhi-Mumbai was the first flight to get cancelled at 11.15 am, after which Go Air also announced cancellation of its Chandigarh-Mumbai flight at 11.30 am.
As the visibility did not improve by noon, Jet Airway’s Chandigarh-Delhi flight at 12.10 pm, Indigo Airlines’ Chandigarh-Srinagar flight at 12.30 pm and another Jet Airway’s Chandigarh-Mumbai flight at 12.45 pm were called off.
According to airport officials, Indigo’s Chandigarh-Mumbai flight was the first to take off at 2.30 pm as visibility improved to permissible limit after 2 pm.
Meanwhile, six-seven flights were operated between 2 pm and 5.30 pm, except Jet Airway’s Chandigarh-Delhi flight at 4.30 pm, which could not take off due to low visibility during that slot.
Go Air’s Chandigarh-Mumbai flight which was scheduled at 7 pm was also cancelled.
Haryana CM lands comfortably
Haryana’s new chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who was travelling from Delhi in a state helicopter, comfortably landed at the airport around 2 pm.
“Earlier due to low visibility, his chopper was planning to make an emergency landing in Ambala but it proceeded for Chandigarh airport after visibility improved and the helicopter was given a green signal for landing,” said SP Singh, deputy commissioner of police, Ambala.
Visibility likely to improve today
Chandigarh Met department director Surinder Pal said although the weather would be partially cloudy, visibility would not be as bad as reported on Tuesday. Wednesday will be better as far as smog was concerned.
Drizzle disperses smog
Chandigarh: Light traces of rain and winds were witnessed in the tricity on Tuesday evening, which brought relief from the smog.
According to the meteorological centre, Chandigarh, there were light traces of rain and wind was blowing at a speed of around 10 km per hour in the city.
The immediate reason of the change in the weather is Western Disturbances over Jammu and Kashmir and parts of Rajasthan. According to the Met, it can lead to light rain in some isolated parts in Punjab and Haryana.
Meanwhile, the minimum temperature on Tuesday was 17.7°C and the maximum was 29.3°C. After rain the weather will get foggy, which can also affect the visibility. Following rain, the day temperature will also fall.
Since Friday dense pollutants were witnessed over the tricity, which worsened on Monday. htc