CAAP hopes Senate probe will look into air traffic control system replacement | Inquirer News

CAAP hopes Senate probe will look into air traffic control system replacement

By: - Reporter / @zacariansINQ
/ 10:39 AM January 05, 2023

The CAAP hopes the Senate will look into replacing its outdated air traffic control system.

FILE PHOTO: Passengers queue at Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 in Pasay City as they wait to board their flights following the resumption of airport operations on Monday, Jan. 2, 2023. INQUIRER file photo / RICHARD A. REYES

MANILA, Philippines — The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) on Thursday expressed hope that the Senate will look into replacing its outdated air traffic control system.

This came as the upper chamber is set to investigate the New Year’s Day air traffic management fiasco at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport which disrupted domestic and international flights.


“One aspect they should be looking at is that the system was purchased sometime [in] 2010. I think it is the right time to think of another CNS/ATM (Communications, Navigation and Surveillance Systems for Air Traffic Management) that would back up or act as primary with our existing system,” CAAP Director General Edgardo Diaz replied when asked about what their expectations are of the Senate probe.


READ: CAAP admits: PH’s air traffic management system outdated

“So what we would like is to look up at the possibility of having another CNS/ATM, to act as a backup to our Philippine skies,” he also said during an interview with ANC’s Headstart.

The CAAP, according to Diaz, raised since early July and August 2022 that the current air traffic control system “could be a potential problem.”

“When we started assuming the office, that was already included in our discussions, as early as July or August, we already identified that it could be a potential problem,” he said.

READ: January 1, 2023, the day PH airspace went blank, strips mask off air travel woes, outdated system

“So we suggested to our Secretary that we need a new system that would be a backup or at least replace the existing CNS/ATM,” he added.


He likewise disclosed that they have already submitted their proposal on the CAAP equipment upgrade. However, he admitted, the realization of their proposal would be dependent on the availability of funds.

In the meantime, Diaz noted, on-the-ground systems should be enhanced to compensate for the lack of upgraded equipment.

“If the CNS/ATM fails, we should have a ground based communication system. We have that in place, but we have to augment our people there so they will be ready to accept flights even when the CNS/ATM is not working,” he said.

READ: Senate probe into New Year’s Day PH air traffic snag sought

“So that is what we are doing now, the contingencies,” he added.

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Diaz earlier said that CAAP is still conducting its internal investigation on the January 1 mess at the Naia that affected at least 56,000 domestic and international travelers.

TAGS: 2023, CAAP, NAIA, New Year, Senate

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