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Arik, Dana Airlines to resume flight operations after curfew

Dana Air and Arik airlines to resume flight operations from Lagos airport tomorrow.

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Dana Air and Arik airlines are set to resume flight operations from Lagos airport on Saturday, as the Lagos State government relaxed the 72-hour curfew imposed on the state.

The curfew was imposed by the State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Tuesday to forestall further breakdown of law and order, following series of EndSARS protests.

Communications Manager, Arik Air, Adebanji Ola, in a statement issued on Friday, explained that flights across the country would operate as scheduled, and passengers were advised to arrive at the airport early to have ample time to complete boarding formalities.

He said, “Customers who could not use their tickets during the period of the curfew can modify such tickets at no extra cost.

“The management of Arik Air thanks customers for their understanding while the cancellation of flights lasted.”

Also, spokesperson for Dana Air, Mr Kingsley Ezenwa announced that the airline was pleased to inform its passengers that the company would resume full flight operations from Saturday, the 24th of October 2020.

He said, “The tickets purchased for flights within the period of the curfew remains valid and can be rescheduled for free by sending an email to us.”

Back story: Themoneymetrics reported earlier on Friday that the Lagos State Government had eased the 72-hour curfew which was earlier imposed on Tuesday, October 2020, to run from 6 pm to 8 am.

This was disclosed by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Friday, October 23, during a press briefing at State House Marina, after a tour of the state to inspect the level of destruction of public and private infrastructure during the #EndSARS protests that later turned violent.

This means residents can go out between 8 am and 6 pm, with effect from Saturday, October 24, 2020).

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Coronavirus

FG denies banning passengers without proof of Covid-19 vaccination

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The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has denied media reports alleging that the Federal Government through the agency has issued a directive banning travellers without proof of Covid-19 vaccination from travelling both local and international flights.

The aviation sector regulator said there was no iota of truth about such action which was allegedly supposed to take effect from December 1, 2021, and asked the general public to discountenance such news.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, this disclosure is contained in a statement issued by the General Manager Public Relations of NCAA, Mr Sam Adurogboye, on Thursday in Lagos, saying that no such directive emanated from the agency.

What the Spokesman of NCAA is saying in the statement

Adurogboye said, “We want to state categorically that no such directive emanated from the government through NCAA. Therefore, the Authority is calling on the public to discountenance such news as there is no iota of truth in it.

“On the other hand, we want to enjoin purveyors of such unfounded news to cross-check facts before publishing.’’

The general manager expressed NCAA’s continuous support for all government initiatives to curb the spread of the Delta variant.

He added, “However, we expect strict adherence to safety protocols in and out of the airports by wearing our facemask, washing our hands periodically, using alcohol-based hand sanitiser, maintaining social distance and avoiding crowded space.’’

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HOSPITALITY & TRAVEL

What air passengers should expect as NiMET predicts 3 days downpour from Monday

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The recent announcement by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) which predicted three days of thunderstorms, cloudiness and downpour from Monday to Wednesday this week, across the country, may have sent jitters through air travellers, particularly those who plan to travel by air for the upcoming Muslim holiday on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Although flying in the rain can sometimes create long-lasting impressions of fear and flying apathy in passengers, it is not as hazardous as people may think. Here are a few things that air travellers should know about flying in the rain.

It is safe to fly when it is raining/windy

It is important to note that flying when it is raining or windy is safe, as it does not always mean the flight will be a rough one. Since you are likely going to arrive at the airport and remain on the ground prior to any boarding and take-off, there is no cause for fear.

The air traffic controllers (ATC) will not clear an aircraft for take-off if the weather conditions are dangerous. In the worst case, a flight may get delayed and passengers would need to be patient as the delay is to ensure their safety.

Expect a bumpy flight

The flight could get bumpy but that is not to say that the aircraft will crash. Flying through monsoon clouds, especially the curly, rainstorm type, will mean bumps, thuds, sudden drops and inexplicable ‘lifts’ of the aircraft.

Think about it somewhat like manoeuvring a car through potholes and road bumps. As irritating as these things are, they will not necessarily tear a vehicle apart.

Lightning will not affect the aircraft

Lightning accompanying rainfall could hit an aircraft but this hurts neither the aircraft nor the passengers as aeroplanes are built to absorb over eight times the energy carried by a bolt of lightning.

More crucially, in the event of a strike, the energy is dissipated through tiny, pin-like devices on the wings, and does not affect the passengers or the aircraft’s electronics.

Your pilot may choose to land after a strike but that is most likely to be as a safety precaution and not because the aircraft is in a distress situation. There are many incidences that warrant a pilot terminating a journey (making an air return) as a precautionary measure.

Aircraft are built to withstand rough weather

It is also important for passengers to know that aircraft are conceptualised, designed and built to withstand the roughest of weather conditions, including rain. Therefore, a heavy downpour will not tear the plane apart. The wings of an aircraft can withstand extreme pressure, as can the cabin. Advanced aviation navigational aid equipment that are now installed at airports and built into aircraft can facilitate the landing of an aircraft in low visibility without fuss, even if it’s raining cats and dogs, as they say, and no one can see the runway.

Look up to the cabin crew

It’s not uncommon for nervous flyers to imagine the cockpit crew working the controls trying to negotiate a rough patch. The truth, however, is that your pilot is probably worrying about keeping the coffee in his (or her) cup.

Turbulence is common, and in several cases, is negotiated by the aircraft’s autopilot. Also, flight attendants have been trained to handle all worst-case scenarios.

When your aircraft is tossing about and you are trying to figure if it’s safe or not, always pause and observe the flight attendants. They don’t want to die either. Observe how they seem completely unaffected and draw confidence from them that all is well with the flight.

Take a seat right on the wing 

If you have a phobia for flying and you know you are bound to get nervous due to inclement weather, then take a seat right on the wing, closest to the aircraft’s centre of gravity, and you will have a relatively calm flight no matter what happens in the sky. But on an aircraft, just like a long bus, if you sit at the back of the aircraft, you’re bound to have a bumpy ride.

Keep to the instructions of the crew

This is by far the most important thing to do. Turbulence is the number one cause of injuries to air passengers in the sky and most often, it’s because some passengers won’t obey the simple instruction to fasten their seat belts.

You may think it’s okay to ignore the seat-belt sign when the goings have been good and it’s nice and sunny outside, but once the weather changes and the seat belt signs come on, it’s best to obey and get the belt buckled.

In case you missed it

The NiMet’s weather outlook released on Sunday in Abuja predicted chances of thunderstorms over parts of Kebbi, Kano, Bauchi, Borno, Taraba, Kaduna, Adamawa and Yobe States in the morning hours on Monday.

NiMet said, “Thunderstorms are expected over the entire Northcentral region in the afternoon and evening periods.

“Inland and Coastal cities of the South are expected to be cloudy over the Southwestern region, with chances of morning rains over Imo, Enugu, Anambra, Abia, Ebony, Ogun, Lagos, Cross River, Delta, Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom and Rivers States.”

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HOSPITALITY & TRAVEL

FG approves reopening of Osubi Airport, Warri for daylight operations

Osubi Airport will be opened for operations in daylight in VFR conditions and observe COVID-19 protocols.

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The Federal Government approved the reopening of Osubi Airport, Warri, Delta State for daylight operations on Monday.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, via his Twitter handle on Monday.

According to him, the facility will be opened for operations in daylight in VFR conditions, while observing COVID-19 protocols.

He tweeted, “I have just approved the reopening of Osubi Airport Warri, for daylight operations in Visual Flight rules (VFR) conditions, subject to all procedures, practices and protocols, including COVID-19, strictly being observed. There will not be need for local approvals henceforth.”

VFR are a set of regulations under which a pilot operates an aircraft in weather conditions generally clear enough to allow the pilot to see where the aircraft is going.

https://twitter.com/hadisirika/status/1366425018272514050?s=21

What you should know

  • The Airport, which was commissioned on 17th April 1999 by the former Minister of Aviation, Captain Briggs, is managed by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).
  • In 2020, the Federal Government, in a letter to all the aviation parastatals, had allegedly terminated the contract of Shoreline Oil Services Limited, the operator of the airport, with immediate effect, citing incompetence.
  • The facility has been a subject of controversy since it changed hands from the original owner, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), to Shoreline in partnership with the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in 2015.
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