Bird chaser jaywalks across taxiway at Delhi airport, gives AI pilot a scare
The pilot of Air India flight AI-463 complained to ATC when a bird chaser crossed the path close to the aircraft that was taxing. DIAL, however, said he was at a safe distance from the aircraft.delhi Updated: Sep 25, 2017 12:55 IST
A bird chaser deployed near the runway to keep off avians, gave an Air India pilot a scare when he crossed the route close to the plane that was taxing. The pilot of Air India flight AI-463 complained to the Air Traffic Controller (ATC) and the staff was whisked away by the ‘follow me’ vehicle to the control room.
The Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL), which operates Delhi airport, has formed a separate cell to minimize bird activity at the airport. About 50 chasers have been deployed to keep birds away from the three runways at the Delhi airport.
They use Zon guns, Bore buns, signal pistols and laser torches of varying decibels and range to scare away birds. At least two planes are struck everyday in India by air-borne birds or animals on runways.
“On September 9 at 11.43am, AI-463 reported that one person crossed Taxiway ‘P’ from left to right. The transmission was monitored by Airside Monitoring Inspector (In Follow Me Jeep) and he immediately rushed to the mentioned position. It was found that aircraft had reported the staff deployed in between Taxiway ‘P’ and Runway 10-28 for scaring birds,” said a DIAL spokesperson.
According to the bird chaser he was at a safe distance from the aircraft.
“The said bird chaser is a trained employee and aware of airport regulations and aircraft performance characteristics. DIAL has deployed specialized agency for controlling bird activities,” the spokesperson added.
People are not allowed to walk on foot at the airside and only selected few have the permit. Others have to use follow me vehicles and airport bus to move near the taxiway that too through a designated path. Sources said that the person crossed taxiway behind Peerbaba Dargah at the airport, which is near to the runway 28-10, primary runway of Delhi airport.
These bird chasers also carry out patrolling to reduce bird /animal activity on airside using signal pistols.
Earlier, crackers were also used to scare away birds but keeping in mind the safety, use of crackers was banned.