New Delhi, May 30: Union Minister of State Praful Patel on Sunday said the runway length of Mangalore Airport will be increased from the present 8,000 ft to 9,000 ft to include a larger spillover area.
On May 22, an Air India plane crashed at the outskirts of the airport claiming 158 lives.
"In fact, we have already taken a decision to extend the runway from 8,000 ft to 9,000 ft. In that 9,000 ft, the spillover area and all such factors will be taken into account," Patel said.
The Union Minister said the existing 8,000 ft runway was fully compliant with all the required guidelines and had a spillover area of 90 metres, which is the threshold area of the runway, based on its length.
Observing that the Mangalore runway was earlier 6,000 feet in length, Patel said the risks of flying the same type of aircraft was bigger. The present one was a new runway, he said.
Commenting on having an approach radar at Mangalore, Patel said it was "already being contemplated. Whatever is required will be done".
He maintained that the Union Government would have an open mind to implement any measure arising out of the lessons from the Mangalore air crash.
Claiming that Indian aviation is safe, Patel said: "Aviation per se can only be either 100 per cent safe or zero. Aviation is not a game of chance . Any error can lead to what happened in Mangalore."