Fewer flights at NAIA due to radar repair
Lawrence Agcaoili (The Philippine Star) - October 23, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The two-day repair of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) radar system to further improve air traffic control and monitoring prompted the cancellation of several flights of the national flag carrier Philippine Airlines, its subsidiary PAL Express and budget airline Cebu Air Inc. (Cebu Pacific).

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) yesterday announced the reduction of flights at the country’s main gateway due to the radar upgrade starting today.

 PAL, jointly owned by taipan Lucio Tan and diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp., said in an advisory that the repair of the NAIA radar would affect 51 flights of PAL and PAL Express.

Affected flights include Manila-Cebu; Manila – Legazpi; Manila – Cagayan de Oro; Manila – Zamboanga; Manila – Kalibo; Manila – Tacloban; Manila – Bacolod; Manila – Davao; Manila – Ozamis City; Manila – Iloilo; Manila – Singapore; Manila – Naga; Manila – Masbate, and Manila – Dumaguete.

 â€œThe repair, which is scheduled to start today until 6 a.m. tomorrow will affect several PAL and PAL Express flights following the government’s directive to all Philippine carriers to reduce the number of flights during the period of upgrade,” PAL said in its advisory.

It said affected passengers may rebook their flights or claim for a refund.

The airline said refunds and rebookings would be processed within seven days from the original date of departure.

 In a separate advisory, Cebu Pacific of taipan John Gokongwei said the upgrading of the radar system led to the cancellation of 44 flights.

Destinations affected by the flight cancellations include Cagayan de Oro, Cauayan, Caticlan, Cebu, Cotabato, Davao, Dumaguete, Iloilo, Legazpi, Naga, and Tuguegarao.

Meanwhile, the schedule of Manila–Iloilo–Manila flights today was slightly adjusted.

“Affected Cebu Pacific passengers have the option to rebook with no penalties within 30 days or get full refund,” the low cost carrier said.

Earlier, the CAAP issued a Notice-to-Airman announcing that the NAIA radar facility would undergo a 30-hour maintenance repair.

CAAP deputy director general John Andrews said they have discussed the scheduled radar repair with the airlines and the Department of Transportation and Communications.

Air traffic controllers will limit the number of aircraft under its control to 11 arrivals and 11 departures per hour, Andrews said.

 â€œInternational flight schedules will not be affected,” he added.

The CAAP official said general aviation flights would not be allowed during the 30-hour procedure except during emergencies.     â€“ With Rudy Santos

AFFECTED CEBU PACIFIC CEBU AIR INC CEBU PACIFIC CIVIL AVIATION AUTHORITY OF THE PHILIPPINES DAVAO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND COMMUNICATIONS FLIGHTS ILOILO MANILA
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