New Delhi: Amid criticism over flight delays and cancellations at Delhi airport due to the prevailing fog conditions, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Monday issued Standard Operating Procedures or SOPs for airlines. As per the SOP, airlines have been directed to provide real-time updates on flight delays due to fog. The aviation regulator stressed that this information should be made available on the airline’s website and also shared with passengers through SMS, WhatsApp and email.
Passengers had complained
Additionally, the DGCA stressed the importance of conducting effective training for airline staff at airports to ensure that they can appropriately communicate and inform passengers about any flight delays. Let us tell you that this SOP has been issued at a time when many passengers took the help of social media to highlight the flight delay.
Passenger inconvenience will be reduced
DGCA in its statement said, “In view of the ongoing fog season and adverse weather conditions, airlines may cancel such flights well in advance, including up to 3 hours delay due to such conditions, with a view to reduce congestion.” Delays exceeding the duration or expected to result in delays will now be minimised, causing inconvenience to the airport and passengers.”
The DGCA said it has imposed the Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR) to guarantee adequate safety measures for air passengers in the event of flight disruption. This includes examples such as denial of boarding, flight cancellations and delays without proper notice to passengers. “Airlines are also required to publish reference to CARs on flight tickets,” the regulator said.
Jyotiraditya Scindia gave assurance
Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia assured that steps were being taken to ‘mitigate’ the situation in future, adding that all stakeholders were working round the clock to minimize the fog-related impact.
“Yesterday, Delhi witnessed unprecedented fog, with visibility fluctuating for several hours, and visibility dropping to zero at times between 5 am and 9 am,” the minister said in an ex-post. Therefore, the authorities were forced to shut down operations for some time even on CAT III runways (CAT III runways cannot handle zero-visibility operations).” Scindia further said, “Keeping passenger safety in mind, this The decision taken is a top priority for everyone in the aviation ecosystem.”
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