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IAF aircraft overshoots main runway in city, hits flight ops

A transport aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) overran the runway while leaving from the Mumbai airport causing flight delays.

india Updated: May 09, 2019 02:23 IST
Neha LM Tripathi
Neha LM Tripathi
Mumbai
Mumbai airport,AN32 mishap,Runway closed
The Indian Air Force aircraft AN 32 that overshot the runway at Mumbai airport on Wednesday.(Vijayanand GuptaHT photo)

An Indian Air Force (IAF) transport aircraft, An-32, overshot Mumbai airport’s main runway during take off late on Tuesday, causing delays to domestic and international flights leaving the city on Wednesday. The main runway had to be closed to remove the IAF aircraft, forcing commercial operations to shift to the shorter, narrower, and thus, less-efficient secondary runway.

While a spokesperson for Mumbai International Airport Limited said only one flight was delayed, real-time flight tracker service flightradar24 reported delays of up to 40 minutes.

“The An-32 aircraft abandoned take off after a technical issue and overshot the runway. The aircraft and crew are safe,” Commander Mehul Karnik, the chief public relations officer of the Indian Navy said on Wednesday morning.

Airport officials said while the runway overshoot took place late on Tuesday night, work to retrieve the aircraft could begin only on Wednesday morning. “All flights operated from the secondary runway, except Singapore Airlines’ Airbus A380 aircraft, which took off from runway 9 as it cannot take off from a smaller runway,” an airport official said. The main runway was finally made available for flights at 4.51pm on Wednesday.

According to flightradar24, a Swedish internet- based service that shows real-time commercial aircraft flight information on a map, departing flights saw an average delays of 40 minutes and arriving flights were delayed for around 25 minutes.

Data on flightradar24 showed around 300 flights were delayed up to 6pm on Wednesday.

Passengers took to social media to report the delays. Varun Nair, a media researcher tweeted, “@BOMairport AI 103 passengers, started from Delhi airport are stuck for 13 hours at Mumbai airport. @airindiain isn’t doing anything. They are only delaying our flight hour after hour. We are all tired, frustrated and shocked at this treatment. Kindly do something.”

The Mumbai International Airport Limited’s spokesperson, however, said, “No flight operation got delayed due to the incident. Only one Air India flight AI 103 (Delhi to Washington via Mumbai) that was scheduled for 6.05am departure had to be rescheduled to 9am, then 4pm, and finally rescheduled to 5.45pm.”

The flight originally operated from Delhi to Washington, but has been flying via Mumbai since closure of the Pakistani airspace.

First Published: May 08, 2019 09:20 IST