Flight operations at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Mumbai will be constrained in the coming days as the primary runway will remain closed for seven hours a day from February 1 to February 17. A Notice to Airmen to conduct operations on the main runway is in place for equipment maintenance at the Mumbai airport.
The main runway is scheduled to be closed from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day except for Wednesdays, through February 17. On Wednesdays, the second runway is going to be shut from 11 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. and 1:15 p.m. to 3 p.m. At this time the main runway would be open for operations.
Officials from the Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) said maintenance of Instrument Landing System (ILS) is being conducted. There is an ongoing upgrade of the localiser in the instrument landing system (ILS), which helps the ILS guide aircraft to the centre of the runway.
The upgrade started on Thursday, and as a result, flights were moved to the secondary runway 14/32, which is shorter compared to the main runway. They are also able to handle a lesser number of flights as compared to the main runway. So delays should be a done deal, however airlines are trying their best to not be off schedule by a lot.
#9Wupdate: Due to main runway unavailability at #MumbaiAirport between 1000 and 1700 hrs till 17th Feb (except 7 & 14 Feb), our flights to & from Mumbai may get affected. Guests are advised to check flight status: https://t.co/aT3wpYWW9R
— Jet Airways (@jetairways) February 1, 2018
Mumbai already is the busiest single runway airport in the country, and this kind of moves impact the airport a lot, bringing down OTP for the airlines and disturb the flow of travellers from this busy airport.
There is not much one can do about this, except bite your lip, suck it up and move your plans to travel early morning or later evening if possible. However, I do wonder if this move was a last minute move, or the airlines knew about it earlier but waited until the last minute to advise the public about it. Because it does throw off a lot of plans when your flight is delayed!
Do you have travel plans over the next fortnight out of Mumbai? Plan ahead for these delays.