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LCCs face strict visibility regulations at Delhi

Download: Printable PDF Date: 27 Aug 2015 15:02 (UTC) category:
LCCs face strict visibility regulations at Delhi - Airlines publisher
Tatjana Obrazcova
Source: ATW

New entrant low-cost carriers (LCCs) to India, including SIA-backed Vistara and AirAsia India, are facing potential schedule disruptions at Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) in Delhi. Both airlines have been flagged as having likely takeoff and landing limitations imposed during low-visibility days at the Delhi hub this winter.

Delhi—frequently a victim of severe smogs—sees hundreds of flights canceled every winter due to poor visibility. The airport is fitted with CAT IIIB automated landing-guidance systems in place, but requires both aircraft and aircrew to be certified before they can utilize them.

Vistara said that has been "working closely" with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) India to ensure both its aircraft and crews were compliant with CAT IIIB certification for low-visibility conditions, but admitted it was not yet at that stage.

"We are hopeful of getting the certification in time [for] uninterrupted operations during the forthcoming winter season,” it said in a statement.

Similarly, recent start-up AirAsia India is said to be still working through the process of obtaining certification for low-visibility operating conditions, even though its aircraft, Airbus A320s, are fully CAT IIIB-compliant.

Indian state carrier Air India faced similar restrictions last winter when it tried to reroute some of its non-CAT IIIB Boeing 787 aircraft through Delhi, but were unable to land in foggy conditions due to lack of the required certification.

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