Runway Repair Must At Pune Airport To Prevent Damage To Aircraft Engines: Indian Air Force

Pune Airport Gets Modern Machine For Runway Repair, Removing Rubber Deposits
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Mubarak Ansari
Pune, 6th October 2021: To address the issue of the rapidly deteriorating condition of the runway and associated operating surfaces at Air Force Station Pune runway resurfacing was an urgent requirement. The aim is to prevent any damage to the engines of operating aircraft, the Indian Air Force (IAF) stated in a press release today.

The same runway is used by the Pune International Airport. For resurfacing work of the runway, the flight operations have been closed from October 16th to 29th. The closure was announced on Tuesday just giving 10 days notice to passengers who are inconvenienced.

The IAF further stated, “Partial closure of runway was undertaken at Pune for a period of 12 hours daily during the night, to cause least possible disturbance to civil aviation for a period of one year from 26 October 2020 to 25 October 2021, during which time the work progressed.

A 14 day complete closure was also planned from 26 April 2021 till 09 May 2021 to undertake the resurfacing of the central bitumen portion of the runway. However, due to the emergent requirement for transportation of COVID-19 vaccine, the Ministry of Defence had been directed to defer the complete closure of the runway.

The work of resurfacing, other than the central flexible portion of the runway is nearing completion. To ensure timely availability of runway post resurfacing, complete closure of 14 days is inescapable and was planned in the 3rd and 4th week of October.

The tentative period of closure was intimated to all airline operators, local Airport Director and Airports Authority of India CHQ, well in advance. However, the exact dates of closure from 16 to 29 October 2021 could be promulgated only after the requisite approvals were obtained from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Ministry of Defence.

As per the present plan, flight operations would resume from 30 October 2021, before the Diwali festival. During the period of complete closure of the runway, IAF will ensure airlift of vaccines from Pune to Mumbai by deploying suitable IAF assets for the purpose, to ensure an uninterrupted supply chain.”