Delhi airport gears up to tackle winter fog

November 21st, 2008 - 9:58 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 21 (IANS) With winter setting in, airport officials here are gearing up to fight the fog menace, expected to be more this year in comparison to last year, a government official said Friday.”Fog is the biggest threat to Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport. We have to minimise the impact of the fog,” IGI meteorological office director R.K. Jenamani told media.

He said the fog this year would be more severe than last year. “The fog which occurred yesterday (Thursday) was an unusual one. We expect the fog to set in by Dec 10. It may remain till January,” he predicted.

Jenamani said his department’s prediction regarding fog last year was largely based on technical study, adding that the average fog this time could be for nine to 14 days.

The official said latest equipment has been installed at runways to ensure safe landing of aircraft. The equipment, the CAT III B system, helps a pilot trace the runway during heavy fog.

The IGI airport developer, Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) is, however, relieved that airlines so far have not rescheduled on account of fog this year.

“We have hardly got any demand from airlines to reschedule their flights owing to fog. That is due to other factors. Last year, many airlines had rescheduled flights much before the fog set in,” DIAL’s chief operating officer Andrew Harrison said.

DIAL is also in talks with airline operators to ensure that CAT IIIB-trained pilots are eployed on Delhi-bound flights, said Harrison.

DIAL and airlines will also start call centres and news bulletins to keep passengers updated about the status of the fog and flight schedules.

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