MANILA, Philippines – Chedeng (international name: Maysak) spoiled most vacationers’ plans for the Holy Week, resulting in lower passenger volume for this period, the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) reported Monday, April 6.
The volume of passengers using the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) reached 298,243 during the Holy Week – 19% or 76,696 lower compared to 369,939 during Holy Week 2014, MIAA said.
Departures peaked Holy Wednesday while arrivals reached highest on Easter Sunday, MIAA General Manager Jose Angel Honrado said.
There were also more international passengers than domestic passengers this year, Honrado added.
International passengers climbed 2.6% to 181,168 from 176,647, while domestic passengers plunged by 39.4% to 117,075 from 193,292.
Honrado said preparations in the airport remain constant despite changes in passenger volume.
Among others, help desks are positioned in all terminals, facilities are properly manned, and security personnel are augmented under Oplan Ligtas Biyahe (Oplan Safe Trip)
Cancelled flights increased
Canceled flights at NAIA increased though over the holiday weekend due to Chedeng.
Philippine Airlines (PAL), Cebu Pacific, and Skyjet announced cancellations over the long weekend.
During any other weather disturbance, airlines are required to immediately release flight advisories to their passengers.
Ground handlers are also made to prepare aircraft for possible strong winds and rains, Honrado added.
Small planes are tied firmly to the ground or are brought to the hangar, while the bigger ones are repositioned to face the wind’s direction.
Thus, Honrado reassured the public that facilities at NAIA are sufficient to withstand severe weather conditions.
On Holy Wednesday, April 1, President Benigno S. Aquino III inspected NAIA terminals 1 and 3.
Aquino remarked that NAIA 1, dubbed as the “worst airport,” is looking much better after rehabilitation efforts, which are eyed to be completed May this year. – Rappler.com
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