Airlines have a hard time at MMIA due to power problems

International airlines are finding it difficult to operate scheduled commercial flights from the international terminal of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos, following a severe power outage which started late Saturday.

The Lagos international airport gets its power supply both from the national grid and from its independent power plant. Daily Sun however learnt that both power sources had failed to work on Saturday and Sunday thus throwing up the entire airport into a state of darkness and disrupting the ability of airlines to make use of the requisite facilities that could enable them take off and land and also disembark passengers. Major airlines whose flight operations were disrupted  on Saturday lastweek included KLM/Air France, British Airways, Lufthansa and South Africa Airways flights.

“On Saturday these airlines had opted to use the ramp to board and disembark their passengers instead of using the fingers because of the absence of electricity to power the airport and it’s facilities,” a source told Daily Sun.

“The power outage continued on yesterday as no effort was made to address the problem and airlines like Arik Air London flight ,Virgin Atlantic Airways, Air Maroc  flights were also hampered and they also had to make use of the ramp,” added the source.

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Spokesman for the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr Yakubu Dati, who confirmed the development, said, “There was a power outage from the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) and the airport was on our independent power supply.

“However when power was restored, the surge adversely affected the k16 transformer that serves the Air-bridges and rendered them unserviceable.

This adversely affected operations of departing flights. The heavy rainfall further delayed attempts by engineers to effect repairs immediately.” he said

Dati, apologised to passengers, airlines and the general public for the inconvenience caused by the power outage development , saying efforts are being made to redress the situation and ensure smooth airline and passenger usage of the Lagos international airport.

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