NAIA managers, airlines urged: Prevent repeat of airport chaos as Mangkhut nears

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 12 2018 09:53 AM

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MANILA - Senator Grace Poe on Wednesday urged airlines and authorities to prioritize passenger welfare with the looming cancellation of flights as potential supertyphoon Mangkhut roared closer to the country.

Speaking to radio DZMM, Poe said she does not want a repeat of the chaos at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport last month, after its main runway was blocked by a Chinese airplane from August 16 to 17.

"Ayaw nating humingi ng second chance na naman... Magbabagyo na ha. Pakitawagan iyung mga pasahero kung cancelled ang flight nila o kaya ayusin na ninyo iyung mga pagkain doon," Poe told radio DZMM.

(We don't want to ask for a second chance again. A typhoon is approaching the country. Please call up passengers if their flights are cancelled or prepare food at the airport.)

The NAIA management has standby funds of some P200 million that can be used for emergency response, the senator noted.

"Ang gobyerno po ay hindi dapat kumita sa tao. Ang gobyerno dapat magbigay ng serbisyo," she said.

(The government should not be making money from the public. It should instead give service.)

Poe is leading a Senate inquiry into last month's 2-day runway closure at NAIA, which was brought on by a Xiamen Airlines' Boeing 737-800 aircraft that ripped off its left engine during a bumpy landing.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines was still seeking help from Boeing representatives to determine whether the Xiamen pilot or rainy weather was to blame for the incident, said Poe, who chairs the Senate public services committee.

Mangkhut, which enters the Philippine area on Wednesday morning, is expected to whip large swaths of the country with intense rains later this week, state weather bureau PAGASA said.

Visit the ABS-CBN Weather Center for the latest weather updates.

DZMM, 12 September 2018