Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Nov 6:
Apprehensive of bird hits, the authorities of Biju Patnaik International Airport (BPIA) in the Odisha capital are planning to divert the course of an open drain running along the runway of the airport.
A major open drain of the capital city which originates from Bharatpur area flows through the airport after passing through Baramunda and Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) campus.
Though no bird hits have been reported in the recent past, airport authorities have stressed on changing of direction of this drain to prevent accidents.
This drain which flows along the runway and being open apart from creating an unhealthy atmosphere attracts a large number of birds which pose a major threat to flights during takeoff and landing.
“The city’s sewerage and waste waters flow through the airport. We are facing a lot of problems due to the drain. It attracts birds to the area. Presence of birds in the operational area of the airport poses a threat to flights while takeoff and landing. It can cause a very serious accident,” said Sharad Kumar, Director BPIA.
Bird hits have been reported in BPIA several times. While 19 bird hits were reported in 2011, it was 18 in 2012 and 10 times each in 2013 and 2014, said sources adding that 11 birds have been reported till date this year.
Under such circumstances joint planning is required said Anant Narayan Jena, Mayor Bhubaneswar.
“Provided the airport authorities write a request letter to the Water Resources department and the department gives necessary instructions to us, we will certainly take action. Many things like disposal level of the drain have to be taken into account,” said Jena in reactions to the airport authorities move.