NAIA reopens runway after plane incident forced 8-hour closure


Posted at Dec 14 2019 12:01 PM | Updated as of Dec 14 2019 03:55 PM

MANILA - Airport authorities reopened Saturday a runway at Manila's main gateway shut for more than 8 hours after a plane veered off upon takeoff. 

Airport General Manager Ed Monreal said runway 13-31, where the Japan-bound Jetstar Japan flight had careened off, was reopened for flight operations at 11 a.m. after it was cleared. 

The closure had disrupted several flights, including those bound for Manila that had to be diverted to the Clark International Airport in Pampanga. 

Flight operations at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport's other runway, 06-24, continued through the duration of the closure of the other strip. 

The Jetstar plane veered off the runway around 2:30 a.m. Saturday upon departure, and its landing gear got stuck on the adjacent grassy area. All passengers and crew deplaned safely. 

By 10:30 a.m., the plane, an Airbus A320, was moved to the Lufthansa Technik Aircraft Maintenance Center at the airport complex. Airport authorities then proceeded with clearing operations and repairs of runway lights damaged in the incident. 

After half an hour, the runway was declared open. 

Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines spokesperson Eric Apolonio said the agency's Aircraft Accident Investigation Board will summon the flight crew to explain what happened. 

Investigators will also check data in the aircraft's blackbox, which contains information on the condition of the aircraft and voice data recording from the cockpit.