Caticlan closes again

As SEAIR stuck on airport runway

March 15, 2010

Caticlan- The country's smallest busy airport closed Monday after a 19-seater LET- 410 aircraft owned by Southeast Asian Airlines got stuck at Godofredo Ramos airport runway when one of its tires burst upon landing, CAAP official said.

The Seair plane did not carry passengers when the incident occurred 7:34 a.m. But it carried three crew members on board. The pilot, co-pilot and airline mechanic—were safe, says Caticlan airport manager Mecine Torres.

The aircraft with registration RP-C2928 under flight DG 705 left NAIA at around 6:30 a.m. to pick up passengers in Caticlan but upon touchdown the aircraft’s left landing gear suddenly blew up, forcing the pilot to park the aircraft in the middle of the runway.

All 15 flights from Air Philippines, Cebu Pacific, and SEAIR were immediately diverted to Kalibo airport 70 kilometers away after the latest Notice to Airmen (NOTAM)was issued by air traffic controllers (ATC) informing the airports closure.

The plane was piloted by Captain James Bihasa with First Officer Cuaresma as co-pilot. Its only passenger is the unnamed flight mechanic.

Airport authorities tried to tow the aircraft from the runway but the airline company did not have a spare tire on hand and the airport did not have the right equipment to pull the stalled aircraft to a safe area further delaying its re-opening.

It took another SEAIR flight from Kalibo to deliver the tires of the LET plane before the blown tire was finally replaced at noon time and the plane cleared off the runway.

Airport operations was restored 6 hours later at 1:34 PM after the plane was towed to the ramp. This is the fifth incident that a SEAIR aircraft has suffered a tire blowout in Caticlan.

Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines Director General Alfonso Cusi ordered a review of the airport’s Emergency and Rescue Plan to prevent a similar incident in the future, among them determination on what equipments are needed by the airport to address such eventualities and prevent prolonged closure of the runway.

The airport has been closed several times in the past after planes either overshot or undershot the runway on landing.

No comments:

Post a Comment