Tisoy-affected airports back to normal ops
MANILA, Philippines — All airports operated by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) pummelled by Typhoon Tisoy last Tuesday resumed normal operations on Thursday.
CAAP Director General Jim Sydiongco said airport managers in the Eastern Visayas and Southern Luzon have been sending positive updates on the resumption of commercial operations since Dec. 3.
“Minor damages were already repaired bringing back immediate resumption of normal operations,” Sydiongco said.
Even the Legazpi Airport, which suffered heavy damage particularly on its passenger terminal building due to the typhoon, had resumed commercial operations on Dec. 4, he added.
On Wednesday, Sydiongco, together with CAAP’s chief engineer, the chief of the Air Traffic Service, and a team of aerodrome engineers from the CAAP Central Office, conducted an inspection of the Legazpi Airport and met with CAAP personnel and representatives from the Office of the Transporstation Security (OTS), Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines.
During the discussion, it was determined that a full rehabilitation of the Legazpi airport would take between 30 to 40 days, Sydiongco said.
He added that for the airport to accommodate full commercial operations while the rehabilitation is ongoing, the international arrival area of the Legazpi Airport has been converted into an interim pre-departure area.
The engineers evaluated that the damaged areas of the airport can be repaired and made operational by Monday, Dec. 9.
“We are aiming that through this interim measure, the passenger terminal building (PTB) still can and will be able to accommodate 400 passengers at any given time in case PAL and Cebu Pacific operate at the same time,” the CAAP official said.
In terms of security at the Legazpi Aiport, Sydiongco said the OTS has agreed to do a manual inspection as only one X-ray machine is operational.
To support the OTS personnel, the CAAP will be augmenting its land and air security personnel.
As of Wednesday, the airport was restored to its capacity as a night-rated airport, Sydiongco said.
Meanwhile, the Calbayog Airport in Eastern Visayas, which was also hit hard by Tisoy, has been returned to full operation after the reinstallation of all markers and wind cones.
Debris from the airport’s passenger terminal, the fire station, and at the vertical path angle, has already been removed, Sydiongco said.
“In fact, a CebGo flight from Mactan was able to successfully land in the airport on December 3,” he noted.
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