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Mumbai airport least punctual among metros for 7 months of 2017

Aviation experts said it was unfair to compare Mumbai’s space-crunched airport with those in other metro cities

mumbai Updated: Jan 29, 2018 09:11 IST
Neha LM Tripathi
Neha LM Tripathi
Hindustan Times
Mumbai airport,domestic airlines,DGCA
Mumbai airport does not have parallel runways, which restricts more traffic, thereby lowering the number of flight movements at the city airport. (HT File)

The city’s airport has been the least punctual among the four busiest in the country for six major domestic airlines in seven of the 12 months last year.

According to data on flight movements released monthly by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the On Time Performances (OTP) of airlines in the domestic sector were the worst at Mumbai airport in these months.

OTP is measured by comparing the time an aircraft takes off (called block time) and the time at which it is schedule to land.

The latest report, for December 2017, showed that the trend continues. For instance, 56.8% Air India flights were on time in the month, followed by Jet Airways (41.5%), SpiceJet (62.8%), GoAir (51.5%), Indigo (61.7%) and Vistara (46.6%).

Barring February to April, which saw marginally better statistics of flight movements from Mumbai for two airlines, the airport had the least scores for all the other months, compared to other big airports.

Aviation experts said while there is a need for all parties, including airlines and airport operators, to work on improving the OTP, it was unfair to compare Mumbai’s space-crunched airport with those in other metro cities.

Mumbai airport does not have parallel runways, which restricts more traffic, thereby lowering the number of flight movements at the city airport.

Former air force pilot and aviation expert Vipul Saxena said, “The current format of making the OTP data public cannot show any trend as there is no level playing field to measure punctuality.” He explained that comparing OTP of Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore becomes irrational owing to Mumbai’s cross runways, fewer rapid exit taxiways and fewer parking bays, among other things.”

Sydney-based aviation think-tank, Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA), in their report released on September 12 last year, said Mumbai airport has reached 94% of its maximum passenger handling capacity and will reach 100% by 2018.

First Published: Jan 29, 2018 00:08 IST