Lufthansa plane blocks Mumbai airport runway, flights hit
Mumbai, May 14: The main runway at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport here was closed for operations after a Lufthansa flight suffered four tyre bursts late on Friday, officials said here on Saturday.
The Mumbai International Airport Ltd. has opened up the secondary runway for regular operations after the incident which led to flight delays or diversions as the main runway remained shut for nearly 15 hours till 3 p.m. on Saturday.
Officials were unsure when it would be reopened even as the Lufthansa Airlines officials were busy replacing the damaged tyres of the aircraft stranded on the main runway.
Four tyres of the landing gear of Airbus A-330 Munich-Mumbai flight LH764 were damaged after landing and the plane could not be moved. The incident took place around 10.45 p.m., the Lufthansa Airlines said in a statement on Saturday.
There were 163 passengers on board who were evacuated via stairs on the runway, and the return flight LH-765 of Saturday was cancelled, hitting the flight plans of 223 passengers. The airline was making efforts to rebook them on other flights.
The incident has hit flight operations with a Cathay Pacific cargo service being diverted to Hyderabad. Some other flights were compelled to offload cargo to operate from the secondary runway which does not enable a longer take-off run.
Another three services were delayed including an Air India flight and a United Airlines Mumbai-Newark flight. Emirates Airlines operated a B-777 instead of an A-380 while a Mumbai-Singapore flight SQ423 of Singapore Airlines with 427 passengers and 25 crew on board was also affected.
Singapore Airlines said passengers of the Airbus A-380 aircraft were provided with hotel accommodation and the revised departure plans of the flight would be determined after the main runway was opened for operations.