A day after a Delhi-bound SpiceJet plane hit a stray animal on the runway a few seconds before the take-off, the airlines have complained of stray animals as a recurring problem at the Surat airport. Owing to the repeated obstructions, the airline has decided to suspend its services at the airport for an indefinite period.
“Stray animals are a growing menace in some airports. This incident has affected our regular operations and hence SpiceJet flights from Surat will now be suspended after this incident. Suspension will be effective as soon as possible,” a SpiceJet statement read.
Minister of Civil Aviation, Ashok Gajapathi Raju, on Friday directed the Airports Authority of India (AAI) to conduct an inquiry into the incident.
An enquiry was also ordered into the incident by Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and a team from DGCA Regional Headquarters Mumbai would visit Surat airport to investigate into the matter, a statement by the civil aviation ministry said.
There have been many incidents of stray dogs spotted on the runway in the past too. Earlier in October, 2014 security officials had trapped a jackal after it had been spotted walking near the runway in Kochi. In May 2012, an Indigo airlines flight from Mumbai had to abort landing at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport in Nagpur after its pilot spotted a pig on the runway.