13 flights diverted as airport guiding system breaks down | Global News

13 flights diverted as airport guiding system breaks down

Thirteen flights were diverted Tuesday from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport to Clark International Airport in Pampanga after a navigation system which aids pilots in finding the airport, broke down.

The VHF Omnidirectional Range (VOR) Navigation System located at the south wing of the NAIA terminal 2 stopped working around 11:15 a.m. and it took about an hour or until 12: 10 p.m. to get it running again, according to Connie Bunag, head of the Manila International Airport Authority’s media affairs office.

“It had a short circuit,” she said without going into detail on how the equipment which directs air traffic and aids aircrafts in landing, broke down.


The VOR, which includes and instrument landing system, transmits signals to the pilot, helping the aircraft navigate and land safely. This is especially important at night or when there is poor visibility.


The affected NAIA-bound flights included four international flights (coming from South Korea, Thailand, and China) and nine domestic flights.

Two of these flights were Philippine Airlines planes—PR 142 from Iloilo and PR 467 from Incheon, South Korea. PAL said the planes were able to return to Manila at 1:29 p.m. and 1:17 p.m., respectively.

Cebu Pacific also confirmed that several of their flights were affected but declined to give details.

These flights were diverted to the Clark International Airport in Pampanga for their safe landings, Bunag said.

Operations at the NAIA were back to normal at about 1 p.m. after the navigational aid was fixed by the personnel of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, the agency in charge of the operation and maintenance of the system.

In 2010, the NAIA equipment had also experienced similar trouble which at that time prompted authorities to cancel and divert flights. Naia’s management was compelled at the time to borrow equipment from Subic International Airport until the defective parts of the VOR were replaced.


The CAAP officials then said that the 16-year-old equipment was due for replacement.

The government had said it aimed to replace the VOR with a new Communications, Navigation, Surveillance and Air Traffic Management (CNS-ATM) system that would use satellite information instead of land-based radars to guide planes to their destinations.

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Originally posted: 6:08 pm | Tuesday, October 9th, 2012

TAGS: Air Transportation, aviation, Clark International Airport, Global Nation, NAIA

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