‘Fire’ in aircraft tests CIAL’s response to emergencies

A full-scale emergency drill conducted by Nedumbassery airport on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

A ‘fire’ broke out in engine number 2 of Alpha Airways — AD 567 — at Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) on Tuesday around 2.15 p.m.

The aircraft had 15 passengers aboard and six crew members when the pilot spotted the fire just before take off. Smoke started emanating from the aircraft triggering a full-scale emergency alert at the airport. One ‘injured’ passenger was airlifted by a Coast Guard helicopter.

Only, the fire was a staged one and the airline was a fictitious one simulated using an aircraft provided by Indigo Airlines.

It was part of a full-scale emergency drill conducted by CIAL to ensure its operational readiness and security during emergencies. The biennial exercise was held in association with all security stakeholders at the airport, various airlines, Coast Guard, district administration, Airports Authority of India, and several hospitals.

Airport Rescue and FireFighting force (ARFF) rushed to the aircraft with their advanced firefighting equipment and fire tenders within seconds. Mobile Command Control was set up under the leadership of Airport Director A.C.K Nair.

Central Industrial Security Force led by Assistant Commandant Prem M J took charge of security. Facilities like emergency control room, assembly area, triage area, friends and relatives reception centre, survivors reception area, media centre, and reunion area were also set up to coordinate rescue efforts as instructed by the Command Post.

Detailed review

The rescue mission was declared completed at 3.30 p.m. The drill was conducted strictly adhering to the COVID-19 protocol.

It was followed by a detailed review in which the airport’s efficiency in rescue operations was assessed,” said Mr. Nair.

CIAL Managing Director S. Suhas lauded various agencies and officials for their excellence.

He expressed satisfaction with the competency of the agencies in crisis response and crisis management.

Deputy Collector Vrinda Devi, A M. Shabeer, Executive Director, CIAL, Kala P. Nair, Joint General Manager, Airports Authority of India, and Roby John, Airport Manager, Indigo Airlines, attended.

CIAL Emergency Task Force, Airline Operators Committee, Airport Health office, Kerala Police, Kerala Fire Force, BPCL, Customs, Meteorological Department, CELEBI, AITSL, BWFS, and hospitals in the districts participated in the drill.

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Printable version | Oct 26, 2021 7:30:09 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/fire-in-aircraft-tests-cials-response-to-emergencies/article36464707.ece

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