Published On : Sat, Apr 13th, 2024

Flights hit as runway lights at Nagpur Airport go ‘dead’ for 2 hrs


Nagpur: Aircraft landing and take-offs could not take place at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar International Nagpur Airport for at least two hours after runway lights went “dead” on Friday evening. Flight operations were restored by around 9.45 pm, reports said. Passengers faced horrid times due to this runway lights fiasco.

Several incoming and outgoing flights got delayed at Nagpur Airport due to a technical glitch that disrupted power supply to the runway lights. According to reports, the Runway End Identifier Lights (REIL) were not functioning. The engineer concerned was busy in restoring the light on the runway. The function of REILs installed at many airfields is to provide rapid and positive identification of the approach end of a particular runway. The system consists of a pair of synchronised flashing lights located laterally on each side of the runway threshold.

According to airport sources, these lights were not functioning. This problem led to several flights being delayed. Almost all flights operating during evening and night were late by almost 2 hours, with some flights more than that. Some passengers said they were not provided proper information by their respective airlines. Fortunately, the airlines handled their passengers well by arranging their food and other comforts in a proper manner.

Functional runway lights are essential for a safe landing, keeping the landing strip visible and signalling crucial landmarks along the runway pavement. There are nine colour combinations of lighting to be found on airport runways and taxiways.

The Nagpur Airport is managed by MIHAN India Limited (MIL) — a joint venture between State Government’s Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC) and the Airports Authority of India (AAI).

The lights are installed by the MIL but the maintenance is carried out by a private contractor. Airport authorities said it took two hours to repair the fault.