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MIAA official defends 36-hour closure of NAIA following skidding of passenger plane

Rescuers gather near the tail of a Xiamen Airlines Boeing 737-800 after it overshot the runway at Ninoy Aquino International airport in Paranaque, Metro Manila in Philippines, August 17, 2018. REUTERS/Erik De Castro

The Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) explained why it took them 36 hours to re-open the runway of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City following an incident involving a passenger plane of the Chinese airline Xiamen Air/

During the senate hearing regarding the recent NAIA incident on August 29, MIAA general manager Ed Monreal explained that the Boeing 737 of Xiamen Air that skidded at the runway of NAIA needed to be balanced before being towed away since it was heavily damaged.

According to Monreal, recklessly removing the aircraft could damage the runway of NAIA and cause other problems.

The MIAA official added that the involved plane has four tons of fuel so they were careful in towing the aircraft so that it will not explode and cause a fire.

Monreal further said that it only took an hour to lift the plane and most of their time was spent on assembling the cranes since each block weighs 20 tons.

The airport official insisted that 36 hours should be considered reasonable in resolving the incident especially since there was a heavy downpour in NAIA during that time.

Pagbitiw nung crane dahil naka-stop na siya biglang bumagsak yung makina, yung isang side na may makina. May gas iyon, may gasolina. Hindi pwedeng kaladkarin dahil magagasgasan yung runway natin, mas lalo tayong tatagal,” Monreal said.

It took as another hour or more bago namin na figure out kung paano babalansehin yung eroplano dahil talagang sirang-sira na. That was really the problem. It’s more on mobilization and de-mobilization,” Monreal added.

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