Weather Damages Runway At Ninoy Aquino Airport

July 18, 2016 – The main runway at the Philippines’ biggest international airport was closed today due to heavy rain, with more than a hundred flights expected to be delayed or diverted, officials said.

A section of the runway, which handles all large aircraft, suffered significant cracks earlier this morning, forcing it to close, aviation and airport spokesmen said.

“It was because of the heavy rain with all those huge aircraft landing. There was a crack (on the runway). It was too damaged so they had to close it for safety reasons,” said Eric Apolonio, spokesman for the government’s civil aviation office.

Flights to and from Singapore and Manila saw delays, including flights by Singapore Airlines, Jetstar Asia, Cebu Pacific Air and Philippine Airlines, according to Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s flight status site.

The crack scattered small pieces of debris capable of being sucked into engines, making it too dangerous to fly, Apolonio said.

The runway closed at 4pm and is expected to reopen at 11pm after repairs are carried out, Apolonio said.

Manila International Airport said more than 40 departing flights would be delayed or cancelled, while more than 60 incoming planes would have to be diverted.

Manila airport has a second, smaller runway but it has no landing lights and cannot receive large jet-liners after sundown, airport officials said.

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