Aquino wants zero outages at NAIA

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President Benigno Aquino 3rd on Monday ordered officials of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) to adopt “contingency measures” to make sure that a power outage does not occur again at the country’s premier Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

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The order came two days after afive-hour power outage hit NAIA Terminal 3.

Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said that Aquino directed Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya and Manila International Airport Authority General Manager Jose Angel Honrado to adopt contingency measures to prevent the recurrence of the power outage that disrupted operations at NAIA Terminal 3 over the weekend.

“Airport authorities were also instructed to maintain vigilance so that the safety of travelers will be assured continuously,” he said.

Power at Terminal 3 was not restored until before dawn on Sunday, prompting cancelation of flights and leaving passengers stranded there.

The MIAA said the power outage was caused by a sub-station of the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) tripping around 8:45 p.m. on Saturday.

Meralco said the glitch was restored in less than a minute.

According to the utility, the five-hour power outage could have been caused by “trouble on the customer’s loadside.”

The blackout threatens to put the NAIA back on the list of worst airports in the world, presidential candidate Miriam Defensor-Santiago warned also on Monday.

Santiago said Malacanañg must immediately investigate the incident and remove from office those who are found responsible for it.

“The [MIAA] seems eager to regain the ‘world’s worst airport’ title which it lost only in 2015, not only for inconveniencing passengers, but for not working as it should,” the senator added.

The NAIA was the world’s worst airport from 2011 to 2013, and the fourth worst in 2014, according to online travel website Guide to Sleeping in Airports, which ranks airports based on comfort, convenience, cleanliness and customer service.

Santiago was reacting to reports that as of Sunday, some 80 domestic flights from NAIA Terminal 3 have been canceled and another 80 international and local flights have been delayed as a result of the blackout, affecting some 15,000 passengers.

The airport administration claimed that even after Meralco restored power, the Terminal 3 remained without electricity.

Santiago said the NAIA must have uninterrupted power supply.

“Assuming for the sake of argument that the Meralco line tripped, where were the generators? The explanation that they were not working is unacceptable,” she added.

The infrastructure agenda Santiago posted on her website includes the development of a modern international airport.

The NAIA runway design, she said, is one of the main causes of congestion.

“The runways are perpendicular to each other, barring planes from using one runway when the other is in use. If the NAIA will be expanded, we must build runways parallel to each other,” the senator added.

“In the meantime, it would be wise to reallocate some flights to the airport in Clark [in Pampanga province north of Manila], which is currently underutilized. Clark Airport should complement, not necessarily replace NAIA,” she said.

WITH NEIL A. ALCOBER

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6 Comments

  1. From leaking ceilings, to stinky toilets, to tanim-bala, to 5hr brownouts, buhay pa din ang general manager?

  2. Ang hina kse, matagal na dapat sinibak si Abaya at honrado. laging sablay mga bata ni PNOY. Manang mana sa amo nila. (Ensure no more brownouts) nakakahiya na tayo, partida pa yan, wala pang lindol, bagyo or terrorism na buking sila na wala man lang contingency plan

  3. An incompetent Secretary and a Head Thief (besides being ugly), will develop a contingency plan to ensure power outage will not happen again? PNoy would have been in a better position if he hired consultant(s) to determine the cause of power outage and a plan to mitigate future outages. These two gentlemen have known in the past that they have ZERO knowledge in Leadership, Management, Planning, and/ or simple common sense to accomplish tasks that they were assigned to do. I think they will DO NOTHING because their term is almost over, and I would like to see the COA to audit NAIA ‘s ledger and put Honorado on HOLD for any financial discrepancies found.

  4. Kun meron pang katiting na kahihiyan si Joseph Emilio at si Jose Angel, kusa na dapat sila mag resign at di na kailangan antayin pa na tanggalin sila. Maski ano pa ang sabihin nila, ang nangyari ay dahll sa kapabayaan at kawalan ng pagiisip ng mga nagkukunwaring alam ang trabaho nila pero wala naman palang nalalaman kundi magkamot ng bayag. Hindi ko lang alam kun ano pa ang sinasabi ng kanilang mga asawa at anak sa kanilang kakapalan ng mukha. Malamang, di lang apat na beses ng napagsabihan ng mga kaibigan ang kanilang mga anak kun gaano ka corrupt at gaano ka walang kwentang mga tao ang kanilang mga tatay.

  5. Si Abaya noon pa yan isinusuka ng taongbayan pero mukhang naka mighty bond sa pangulo.

  6. Casual Observer on

    How can this be a headline? If there’s anybody out there who wants power outages and brownouts that would probably be news. This is typical of inept leaders. Quick to react after the fact. He issues orders as if that’s all it takes. Those orders are not necessary. They are supposed to be in the job description of those responsible for getting things done. Either they haven’t read it or don’t understand it. If he only surrounded himself with good, competent men he could have just said, “Let there be light.” And there will be light.