Philippine air traffic suspended due to technical problems
By Jeffrey Teruel
Technical problems at the air traffic control facilities of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines led to mass flight delays and cancellations throughout the country during the afternoon of the first day of 2023.
The technical problems were first reported by the Manila International Airport Authority via a press statement issued around 1:54 p.m. Manila time, with flights being put on hold at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
“Flights to and from Manila are on hold due to technical issues at the Air Navigation Facilities of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines. The CAAP is now putting in place emergency protocols to address the situation to enable flight operations to resume as soon as possible,” the MIAA said in a statement.
The Manila airport further added it had activated its crisis management team to address the situation, and expected flight departures and arrivals would be retimed to new schedules.
“The MIAA emergency response teams have been ordered to implement (standard operating procedures) pursuant to the MIAA Manual on Irregular Operations,” the airport authority added.
As a result of the technical problems experienced by the air traffic control facilities in Manila, all flight operations throughout Philippine airspace were affected. Partial operations would eventually be restored at around 4 p.m. Manila time.
According to the MIAA, a total of 282 flights were delayed, canceled, or diverted to other regional airports due to the situation, which has affected around 56,000 passengers. Most flights departing in the afternoon and evening have been canceled by airlines operating at the NAIA.
Major Philippine-based carriers such as Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific and AirAsia Philippines have issued advisories via their own social media pages, which include information for flight rebooking and refund options. Each airline has also stated they are working with the aviation authorities for the adjustment of flight schedules and clearances.
Upon the partial restoration of flights, the MIAA reported the first flight to land following the flight suspensions at the NAIA was Philippine Airlines PR222 from Brisbane. The first departure was Cathay Pacific flight CX930 to Hong Kong.
The MIAA is asking the traveling public for their cooperation at the time. (Flights in Asia)