Wonderboom National Airport. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/African News Agency (ANA)
Wonderboom National Airport. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/African News Agency (ANA)

Suspension of night flight operations at Wonderboom airport lifted

By Rapula Moatshe Time of article published Mar 17, 2021

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Pretoria - The temporary suspension of the night flight operations at Wonderboom National Airport has been lifted.

This followed a decision by the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) last week to ground the flights after it discovered some faults with the runaway lighting system.

SACAA also found that the airport was non-compliant with the rescue and fire-fighting requirements.

At the time the SACAA said the suspension would remain in place until such time that the airfield lighting system was adequately addressed.

The Pretoria News reported recently that some lights have been broken for at least seven months, according to participants in the airport WhatsApp group, where the problem was constantly raised.

Roads and transport MMC, Dikeledi Selowa, said the City of Tshwane under which the airport operates had issued instructions for the problem to be attended to as a matter of urgency.

"Within a week the necessary repairs were effected so that we could restore the airport to full operation. The results of the commitment above are corroborated by the immediate lifting of the imposed Notice to Airmen by SACAA that saw the grounding of all night flight operations at the airport," she said.

She reported that all night flight operations at the airport were restored after the identified technical faults with the lighting system were repaired "to the ultimate satisfaction of the SACAA".

"Wonderboom airport is a key asset of the City and it is a critical driver of economic growth for the municipality. We are committed as the City of Tshwane to ensuring that the airport operates optimally and that its full potential is unleashed," Selowa said.

The temporary closure was effected three months after the municipality had expressed confidence to reclaim the airport's category 5 status after it was downgraded to level 2 for non-compliance with the aerodrome licence regulations in 2019.

Pretoria News

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