Sibu Airport expected to reopen only at noon Monday

SIBU, SARAWAK (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Sibu Airport is expected to resume normal operations only at noon on Monday (April 10), instead of at 10pm on Sunday as was previously scheduled.

As a result of the new deadline, all morning flights on Monday will be cancelled.

Sibu Airport manager Zainuddin Abu Nasir said the delay in the reopening of the airport was due to repair works being carried out on the runway, following Saturday's incident, when a MAS aircraft skidded while attempting to land during a heavy downpour.

He said the airport could not be reopened as projected as the runway had several holes that needed to be filled up.

"We have to continue to keep the runway closed and the airport shall only open at noon (April 10). Cleaning-up works will resume tonight.

"This part of the process is to ensure the safety of passengers. We have issued a NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) to advise airlines on the closure," he added.

 

The airport closure resulted in the cancellation of 28 MASwings flights, 16 AirAsia flights and four MAS flights, affecting 3,787 passengers.

On Saturday, a Boeing 737-800 aircraft carrying 61 passengers and six crew members skidded and landed in an awkward position while attempting the landing in heavy rain. All on board safely disembarked via two slide rafts. No injuries have been reported.

The cause of the incident is being investigated by Malaysia's Department of Civil Aviation.