Dog on runway keeps flights in air | india | Hindustan Times
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Dog on runway keeps flights in air

A dog on the runway at Mumbai’s airport caused much mayhem: 1,800 passengers held up, four flights forced to go-around, while five more were diverted, burning fuel worth Rs 8 lakh. Soubhik Mitra reports.

india Updated: Jun 07, 2008 02:48 IST
Soubhik Mitra

On Friday, a dog on the runway at Mumbai’s airport was the cause of much mayhem. Not only were 1,800 passengers held up, four flights were forced to go-around, while five more were diverted, burning fuel worth Rs 8 lakh in the process.

The dog had strayed onto the main runway between 10.30 am and 11 am.

The Mumbai International Airport Limited confirmed the presence of the runway canine. “An Air India, Kingfisher, Jet Airways and a non-scheduled carrier had to go-around due to the dog on the runway.”

Three Jet Airways and a Kingfisher flights were diverted to Ahmedabad. Another Jet Airways flight was diverted to Pune.

“The airport dog squad was chasing two strays, one of which ran onto the runway. The number of birds on the airfield increases every monsoon. This attracts the dogs,” the spokesperson added.

“The stray dogs are quite smart. They know we can’t chase them once they are on the runway,” said a dog squad member.

Although the dog was caught at 11 am, it did not end the airport drama.

A Dubai-bound cargo flight over Mumbai lost its weather radar and declared a full emergency. It was forced to land on the main runway which was shut for weekly maintenance. This delayed the take-off of 25 flights.

On February 19, Hindustan Times had reported how dogs on the runway are a nuisance. Garbage from surrounding slums attracts dogs.