Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) has announced the closure of its runway today between 11:00 and 17:00. India’s second-busiest airport schedules yearly maintenance of its runway to protect from rain-related wear and tear. All airlines operating out of the airports have been informed, and flights rescheduled.
Mumbai Airport’s runways will remain closed for six hours on October 18th to carry out maintenance work following the monsoon season. CSMIA posted a message on its Twitter account stating that maintenance work on its runways – RWY 14/32 & 09/27 – will take place for six hours as part of its post-monsoon preventive measure.
Work will be done on runway edge lights for runway 14/32, and the upgradation of AGL (Aeronautical ground lights), among other things.
Just last week, eight flights were diverted from CSMIA as heavy rains disrupted operations at the airport. The city and its suburbs receive intense downpours during the yearly rainy season, often affecting flight movement in and out of the city.
The monsoon season can be tough on Mumbai, with the city often coming to a standstill following heavy rains and the resulting waterlogging. In the past, the city has even had to shut down rail and air services as it gets flooded and clogged with water.
To combat rain-related damage, Mumbai Airport preps its runways twice a year, both pre-and post-monsoon. In May, it closed the runway for six hours in preparation for the rains and advised passengers scheduled to fly in and out of the city.
Photo: Getty Images
The airport often bears the brunt of the rains, and in 2010, it even had to close its runway after its surface was damaged. Landing in Mumbai during the monsoons can also be challenging for pilots. In 2019, A SpiceJet 737 coming from Jaipur overshot the runway while landing amid heavy rain. The incident led to the shutdown of the main runway of the airport, with flights canceled or diverted to the nearby airports. The aircraft was stuck at the end of the runway for days before it could be pulled out.
In 2021, floodgates were also installed at the junction where a seasonal river flows into the airport to stop the ingress of water.
According to OAG, the leading data platform for the global travel industry, Mumbai is one of the top two airports in the world in 2022 for low-cost flights. It also handled more than 130,000 passengers on a single day in September, the highest since the pandemic. An active runway, therefore, is of critical importance.
Photo: Getty Images
As part of its green initiative, CSMIA also announced recently that it now relies entirely on renewable energy, drawing 5% of its power through solar energy and the remaining 95% from hydro and wind energy.
Has your flight been rescheduled due to the Mumbai runway closure today? Please leave a comment below.
- IATA/ICAO Code:
- Runways :
- 09/27 – 3,660m (12,000ft) |14/32 – 2,990m (9,810ft)
- Terminal 1 |Terminal 2 |General Aviation Terminal