16 hrs of fog, over 200 flights hit | delhi | Hindustan Times
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16 hrs of fog, over 200 flights hit

Dense fog continued to disrupt flight operations at Delhi airport on Wednesday.

delhi Updated: Jan 27, 2010 23:36 IST
HT Correspondent

Dense fog continued to disrupt flight operations at Delhi airport on Wednesday.

More than 200 flights were delayed by four to six hours and 54 flights were cancelled after visibility dropped to zero at the Indira Gandhi International Airport.

After fog set in early on Tuesday evening, 34 flights, both international and domestic, had to be diverted and 31 flights were rescheduled.

Low visibility procedures were implemented at 7 pm on Tuesday and visibility improved only by 10.55 am on Wednesday.

“The worst period was on Tuesday evening as fog came in very early. Flights of almost all airlines had to be diverted,” said an official of a full cost carrier who didn’t wish to be named.

With dense fog conditions remaining at the airport for nearly 16 hours, flights were diverted to airports at Jaipur, Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Mumbai and Hyderabad.

On Tuesday night, the runway visibility dropped to 50 metres and continued to hover between 50 metres and 100 metres, affecting the schedules of departing flights. The minimum runway visibility required to take-off is 150 metres.

Only a few flights could land using CAT-IIIB Instrument Landing System on Tuesday night.

The airport has witnessed more than 160 hours of fog this January and is on its way to cross the record of 168 hours of dense fog in January 2003.

The worst fog witnessed in a single month was in December 1998 when the airport saw 179 hours of dense fog.

Met department officials said the continuing spell of dense fog is due to the absence of wind movement.

The air traffic control at IGI airport again witnessed a problem in the radar system with radar screens going blank at 12.30 pm on Tuesday.

“There was no problem with radar system but one screen went blank for a few hours,” said an Airports Authority of India spokesman. A similar problem was encountered on Saturday when one screen went blank.