Around 165 international and local flights were canceled on Friday and Saturday at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport after a Chinese plane skidded off the runway.
Edd Gumban
Senate probe into NAIA runway mishap sought
Patricia Lourdes Viray ( - August 20, 2018 - 12:20pm

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Grace Poe, chair of the Senate public services committee, has filed a resolution for a full-blown investigation into an "apparent and seeming broken systems of regulations" following the recent runway mishap at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Operations at the country's main gateway were paralyzed when a Xiamen Air plane skidded off the runway last Thursday.

The incident, Poe said, led to "airport paralysis and affected thousands of passengers and substantial flight cancellations which are anathema to rendering basic public services."

Poe filed Senate Resolution 852 for the purpose of reviewing airport operations and management, assessing tourism, economic and investment impacts, as well as protecting the interest of passengers and the country.

"Don't we have the protocols, needed equipment and manpower to address these kinds of incident? Do we really need at least 36 hours or [a day and a half] to clear our runways?" Poe said in her resolution.

The senator noted that passengers have been complaining on social media of not being accommodated for rebooking as airline ticketing counters have been closed. Some were not given free meals or water after waiting for hours while some overseas Filipino workers opted to buy another ticket.

RELATED: #Trending: Frustration, horror stories at the airport

Such incidences call for the need to fully enforce the Air Passenger Bill of Rights, which "provides benefits to passengers in times of flight delay or cancellation, among others," the resolution read.

Poe also stressed that proper authorities should be on top of the situation and should convene to figure out how the fiasco could have been handled better.

"Whereas, the incident is truly a jolting wake-up call and we cannot afford to be the epitome of the worst airport in the world again," Poe said.

The latest airport mishap show the need for the Philippine airport management to review and adopt new rules and standards in the aviation industry, the senator said.

Poe earlier said that airport and transportation officials, as well as airline executives, will be summoned to explain the paralysis of the airport, which affected around 165 international and local flights.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade had apologized to the public following after the airport runway mishap.

“It is a regrettable experience, which is not of our own liking, nor of our own making. I am sorry. We did our very best to address the situation,” Tugade said in a statement.

As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: September 10, 2018 - 1:01pm

An airplane going off the runway at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport has prompted the cancellation of some flights and the diversion of others.

A Xiamen Air flight MF8667 went off the runway before midnight Friday because of bad weather. Nobody was hurt in the incident and the flight's passengers have been brought to a hotel.

According to the Manila International Airport Authority, the following flights to and from Manila have had to be cancelled as recovery and clearing operations continue:

Terminal 1

Etihad Airways EY 421 Manila - Abu Dhabi 2336H
Saudi Airlines SV 871 Manila - Jeddah 1810H
Hong Kong Airlines HX 781 Hong Kong - Manila 2300H
China Airlines CI 711 Kaohsiung - Manila 0910H
China Airlines CI 712 Manila - Kaohsiung 1000H

Terminal 2

Philippine Airlines
PR 453 Manila - General Santos 0715H
PR 454 General Santos - Manila 1215H
PR 1845 Manila - Cebu 0655H
PR 1846 Cebu - Manila 1010H
PR 432 Manila - Tokyo 1440H
PR 408 Manila - Osaka Kansai 1355H 
PR 438 Manila - Nagoya 1355H

PAL Express 2P 2959 Manila - Cagayan de Oro 0715H

Terminal 3

Cathay Pacific
CX 908 Manila -Hong Kong 0600H
CX 912 Manila - Hong Kong 0825H
CX 907 Hong Kong - Manila 0940H
CX 906 Manila- Hong Kong 1050H
CX 901 Hong Kong - Manila 1125H
CX 900 Manila - Hong Kong 1235H

Cebu Pacific
5J 272 Manila - Hong Kong 0600H
5J 273 Hong Kong - Manila 1200H
5J 5054 Manila - Hong Kong 0615H
5J 5055 Narita - Manila 1720H
5J 929 Manila-Bangkok 0615H
5J 930 Bangkok - Manila 1445H
5J 110 Manila -Hong Kong 0735H
5J 111 Hong Kong - Manila 1400H
5J 805 Manila-Singapore 1330H
5J 806 Sinagpore - Manila 2330H

The following flights have been diverted:

Philippine Airlines
PR 105 San Francisco - Manila - Diverted to Cebu
PR 103 Los Angeles - Manila - Diverted to Cebu
PR 117 Vancouver - Manila - Diverted to Cebu
PR 115 San Francisco - Manila - Diverted to Clark
PR 119 Toronto - Manila - Diverted to Clark

Cebu Pacific
5J 187 Seoul Incheon - Manila - Diverted to Clark
5J 804 Singapore - Manila - Diverted to Clark

September 10, 2018 - 1:01pm

In a Senate hearing, the flight safety investigation committee of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines says they will look into possible violations of Philippine civil aviation regulations and impose corresponding penalties for such violations.

September 7, 2018 - 7:23am

The Senate will resumre hearings on Monday morning into the closure of the runway at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport last month.

According to an advisory, the Senate Committee on Public Services and Committee on Economic Affairs will hold the hearings jointly.

The closure, caused by a runway mishap involving a Xiamen Airlines aircraft, left thousands stranded as flights were diverted and cancelled until clearing operations were done.

The Manila International Airport Authority on Thursday said it will fine local and international airlines P5,000 per passenger for making uncoordinated flights for their passengers in the aftermath of the mishap. The uncoordinated flights made congestion at the airport worse as authorities scrambled for places to put the planes.

August 24, 2018 - 8:05am

The Senate Committee on Public Services will hold a public hearing on the NAIA runway mishap on August 29, Wednesday, Sen. Grace Poe's office announces.

The committee has invited officials from the Department of Transportation, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp.

Representatives of airlines, airport construction firms and the academe are also expected to attend.

The hearing will be at the Senate's session hall. 

August 20, 2018 - 3:28pm

Aviation authorities vow that an ongoing investigation into what went wrong at the airport following the botched Xiamen Air landing is full and thorough.

At a press conference, Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines' Capt. Donaldo Mendoza says that pilots are being interviewed about the incident and have undergone drug and alcohol tests.

CAAP Director General Jim Sydiongco also comments on the perceived delays in the extraction of the grounded aircraft on the main runway. He says 200-ton cranes took some time to be mobilized because extraction was not simply about dragging the aircraft. "You can't make use of the runway that way," Syndiongo explains.

Ed Monreal, chief of the Manila International Airport Authority, says total losses are yet to be computed.

August 20, 2018 - 12:08pm

Xiamen Airlines issues an apology for flight delays and the thousands of passengers stranded over the past few days after one of its planes overshot the main runway of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport last week.

"Xiamen Airlines sincerely apologize (sic) to all passengers affected by the incident and will do everything in its power to assist passengers," the statement reads.

The carrier says the airport resumed operations on Saturday, August 18, after the main runway was closed for 32 hours.

"Xiamen Airlines promptly dispatched airplanes at Manila to pick up passengers," it says. "  Xiamen Airlnes will continually be sending four planes from Fujian to Manila to bring back passengers."

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