Authorities at the Mumbai airport had a minor scare on Wednesday morning after an Air India flight from Nagpur reported spotting of ‘unusual aerial objects’ 12 nautical miles ahead of touchdown.
Officials from the city air traffic control (ATC) tower said that as per the pilot’s description the objects appeared like dark blue balloons.
“We have alerted the concerned authorities. Unusual flying objects such as balloons are unsafe for flights. It could get sucked into a plane’s engine and affects its performance,” said an ATC official.
This was the first spotting reported within a month after the civil aviation ministry asked the state government to stop the menace.
On September 3, the HT had reported that RN Choubey, civil aviation secretary and sought support from state chief secretary Swadheen Kshatriya on curbing the menace threatening fliers’ safety.
Choubey’s note stated that kites, wish lanterns and hot air balloons was among the most serious concerns raised by stakeholders at the city airport.