The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) says flight operations have resumed at the Port Harcourt International Airport after yesterday’s bush fire led to the closure of its runway.
In a statement, FAAN General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Henrietta Yakubu, says the fire has been put under control.
“Following a careful evaluation and mitigation of the impact of the bush fire earlier reported around the Port Harcourt International Airport and the dissipation of smokes around the airside, FAAN has now re-opened it to operations. Normal flight activities have, therefore, re-commenced at the airport.”
The fire was said to have started after villagers living around the airport set the bushes on fire which spread close to the runway.
The closure led to many passengers stranded at the airport as flights could not take off and were diverted to the nearest airports.
Flights affected were Max, Arik and Dana Flight 368 from Abuja to Port-Harcourt with 124 passengers on board.
Two of the flights from Abuja had to return since it was late to land at alternate airports like Owerri that is for daylight operations.
Meanwhile, the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) says it has commenced investigation into a serious incident involving an Airbus 330-300 aircraft operated by Turkish Airline, with registration marks TC-LOL.
The aircraft suffered a burst tyre on landing on runway 21 at the Port Harcourt International Airport, veered off the runway and managed to taxi to the new international terminal.
The Bureau, in a statement, says it was notified at about 3:30am local time, on the 31st December, 2019, adding that the aircraft was coming to Port Harcourt from Istanbul, Turkey with 295 passengers and 11 crew members on board. All the occupants disembarked with no injury.
The Bureau says it is open to receiving any video clip, relevant evidence or information that may assist in this investigation.