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Cyclone Vardah: AAI to review situation at Chennai airport at 9 pm

Rail and flight services have been affected by heavy rain and strong winds that lashed the city and other coastal areas of Tamil Nadu due to cyclone Vardah.

By: PTI | New Delhi |
December 12, 2016 8:43:56 pm
Cyclone Vardah, chennai cyclone, chennai cyclone reports, AAI, AAI review Chennai airport, chennai airport, chennai cyclone damages, NOTAM, indian express news The Chennai Airport which suspended its operations on Monday due to heavy rains following Cyclone Vardah. PTI Photo by R Senthil Kumar (PTI12_12_2016_000198B)

Airports Authority of India (AAI) would review the situation at the Chennai airport, from where no flight operation has taken place since this morning at 9 pm to decide on resumption of services, a senior official said. NOTAM was issued to the airport authorities this morning after strong cyclonic winds and poor visibility hit Chennai and other parts of the state, throwing life out of gear.

WATCH VIDEO : Cyclone Vardah kills 10, people evacuated to safer places

Rail and flight services have been affected by heavy rain and strong winds that lashed the city and other coastal areas of Tamil Nadu due to cyclone Vardah. Following this, the operations at the airport was suspended, resulting in diversion of 25 incoming flights, including those from international destinations, to the nearby Hyderabad and Bangalore airports. Besides, nearly 25 outbound flights were delayed.

“As of now, operations at the Chennai airport remain suspended. There is no damage to the runway, But we have shut radars because of the high speed winds. There is some power supply issue at the ATC complex, which the local authorities are trying to restore. But we have all other contingency measures in place,” a senior AAI official in Delhi said.

The official said that the NOTAM will be reviewed around 9 pm and the decision to resume services will be taken based on the situation at that time. “Airlines on their part have also not filed their flight plan in view of the situation,” he said.

Meanwhile, private carrier Jet Airways has said it has put in place arrangements to fly those passengers whose flights were diverted due to the Chennai airport closure. “To this end, airline’s Guests booked on domestic flights diverted to Bengaluru and Hyderabad will be flown back to their cities of origin, so as to minimise their inconvenience,” Jet Airways said in a statement.

In view of the prevailing inclement weather due cyclonic conditions in Chennai and in the interest of safety of its guests, crew and aircraft, all Jet Airways flights to/from Chennai stand cancelled up to midnight tonight (2359 hours), it said. Furthermore, Guests may cancel or rebook/change their itinerary as required, without any penalty for the affected flights only, the airline said.

WATCH VIDEO : Visuals Of Cyclone Vardah In Tamil Nadu

Budget carrier IndiGo has offered full refund, for those passengers affected to and from Chennai due to severe weather conditions, between December 12 to December 13. “We are also waiving off change fee for those who wish to reschedule/edit their itinerary. Along with that we are and will be providing refreshments to those passengers stranded at the airport,” IndiGo said.

“We are constantly assessing the situation and will extend the relief to affected passengers till required,” the airline said. Air India has said it has decided to waive off the cancellation charges for all its flights to and from Chennai for Monday and Tuesday.

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