All of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport's (NAIA) terminals will be closed for 12 hours on Tuesday, December 3, 2019 due to the effects of Typhoon Tisoy, the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) said on Monday.
According to the MIAA in a press conference, the airport will be closed from 11 a.m. on Tuesday until 11 p.m.
A total of 480 flights are expected to be affected.
MIAA General Manager Ed Monreal said that after consulting with PAGASA, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), and the airlines operating at the airport, "isasarado ho natin ang paliparan pagdating ho ng alas-onse ng umaga bukas, and we're looking at a window of 12 hours."
He also said that the closure might go on longer than 12 hours, depending on the weather.
"Kasi po...pag wala na hong epekto ang bagyo, magkakaroon tayo ng inspection. Ike-clear natin and runway, ike-clear natin ang rampa, marami po ang gagawin natin bago tayo magbukas. So kung ang latest ay 11, it may go farther depende sa galaw ng hangin at ng bagyo," he said.
"Ito po ay technically force majeure para sa safety ng pasahero," Monreal added.
"[L]alo na ho ngayon na halos mga hotels ay puno dahil sa SEA Games, ako ay nakikiusap sa pasahero na huwag na pumunta sa paliparan," he said, urging passengers to coordinate with airlines for their schedules.
In a statement, MIAA said that when flight operations resume, scheduled flights will be prioritized.
"Recovery flights will be accommodated on a first come, first served basis. For an orderly succession of flights, recovery flights must have prior approval from the MIAA authority," it said.
"Regular runway maintenance (1:30-3:30 a.m.) shall likewise be suspended for three more days after resumption of flights to give way to recovery flights," it added.
CAAP Director General Captain Jim Sydiongco said that they took many safety issues in consideration before deciding on closing down the airport for several hours.
"Sa window na iyon na kasagsagan ng bagyo, dinesisyonan na ng MIAA and sinasang-ayunan natin, sinusuporta natin, na that's the safest way to go," he also said.
Typhoon Tisoy is expected to make landfall over Bicol in the coming hours. Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No. 2 is currently up over Metro Manila. — BM, GMA News