Operations at Ercan Airport were abruptly suspended due to an “electrical problem” in the air traffic control tower, leading to the failure of crucial systems. The incident raised concerns of possible sabotage, prompting an investigation into the cause of the shutdown.
Why were operations at Ercan Airport suspended?
Operations at Ercan Airport were suspended due to an “electrical problem” in the air traffic control tower, causing the failure of essential systems like radars and communication radios. This led to a halt in all landings and take-offs, raising concerns of possible sabotage, which is under investigation.
On an ordinary Wednesday, Ercan Airport came to an abrupt standstill, sparking concerns amongst passengers and officials alike. The transport minister, Erhan Arikli, was among those affected, as his travel plans were cut short by the unforeseeable halt of airport operations.
Arikli Raises Concerns
In the midst of the confusion, Arikli posed a pressing question to the public broadcaster, pondering whether this could be the result of a “technical malfunction or man-made sabotage.” His determination to get to the bottom of the issue was evident as he directed his team to delve into the investigation immediately.
Electrical Issues Plague the Tower
The cause of the complication was pinpointed to an “electrical problem” within the air traffic control tower. This incident led to a complete shutdown of all essential systems, such as air traffic radars, communication radios, and weather radars. Consequently, the airspace was left without guidance, halting all landings and take-offs.
Ripple Effect on Flights
The repercussions of the shutdown were felt widely as flights to and from Ankara, Adana, and Antalya were forced to turn back. Air traffic controllers found themselves in a precarious situation, relying on mobile phones to monitor the airspace over Cyprus.
Officials Caught in the Chaos
The ‘prime minister’, Unal Ustel, was also a casualty of the situation. His planned trip to Ankara was postponed indefinitely due to the unexpected airport closure. This incident underscored the significance of the airport’s functionality for not just travelers but also high-ranking officials.
Cem Kapisiz, the airport’s air traffic control chief, described the scenario as a crisis. Speaking candidly to a local news outlet, he expressed the dire nature of the situation, emphasizing that without power, providing air traffic services was impossible.
Diverting Flights to Nearby Cities
In an attempt to manage the crisis, Kapisiz revealed that inbound flights from distant locations were being redirected to Ankara and Antalya. This decision was made to ensure passenger safety and to alleviate pressure on the inoperative airport systems.
Technical Failures and Backup Generators
Mustafa Sofi, the director of the north’s civil aviation department, addressed further concerns by stating that when the power failed in the control tower, the backup generators, unfortunately, did not activate. This failure of redundancy systems added another layer to the complications being faced by the airport staff.
Investigation and Accountability
While the situation gradually moved towards resolution, the call for a thorough investigation into the cause of the power outage and the failure of backup systems was echoed by all affected parties. The public awaits clear answers and steps towards preventing such occurrences in the future.
- Operations at Ercan Airport were suspended due to an “electrical problem” in the air traffic control tower, causing the failure of essential systems.
- The incident raised concerns of possible sabotage, prompting an investigation into the cause of the shutdown.
- The transport minister, Erhan Arikli, questioned whether the shutdown was a result of a “technical malfunction or man-made sabotage.”
- The shutdown resulted in the halt of all landings and take-offs, forcing flights to be redirected and leaving the airspace without guidance.
- The airport’s air traffic control chief described the situation as a crisis, emphasizing the impossibility of providing air traffic services without power.