Domestic flights unaffected by harmattan condition

Domestic airline operators say flights have not been affected by the harsh harmattan weather condition.

The Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) has already cautioned the general public and airline operators of a possible disruptions to air travel if the condition gets severe.

But one of the domestic airline operators, Passion Air maintains its operations are yet to be impacted by the Harmattan.

The Sales and Marketing Manager for Passion Air, Samuel Razak Tachie in an interview with Citi Business News said the company was still running its daily flights to Tamale and Kumasi.

“We will encourage customers to keep traveling, their safety is rest assured. We will fly them to their destination. But the weather is very unpredictable, for instance this morning we had a weather forecast of visibility of 1,200 feet, it went up to 1,800 feet and suddenly shot up to 6,000 feet so there’s nothing much the operators can do, we are subject to the weather conditions so we operate as and when the weather is permissible and is safe to fly, ” he said.

Harmattan is a very dry, dusty wind which blows towards the East of the West African coast almost every year.

The condition usually lasts for three months spanning December to February.

This affects some economic activities including air travel due to its impact on visibility.

Ahead of this year’s season, the GCAA advised passengers and airline operators of the distortions to their movement due to the harmattan.

It however said it was working closely with all stakeholders to ensure the safety of all passengers during the period.

On what remedial measures may have been put in place to avert any possible inconvenience to flights should the harmattan get severe, Mr Tachie’s said, “We will only fly when conditions are right for us to fly and under no circumstances will we put the lives and safety of our customers at risk. And so if the weather permits us to fly, we will, otherwise we will have to find alternative means, whereby we will either put them on subsequent flights if the weather permits or we will reschedule it.”

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