Liberia: RIA to Begin Daily Shutdown at midnight; Airlines with Late Flights Asked to Adjust Schedule
MONROVIA – The perilous night-hour drive on the under-construction highway leading to the Roberts International Airport and the electricity challenges being faced by the Airport is compelling the management to begin a daily shutdown of the Airport at midnight to allow an electronification implementation work plan that will run about six to 10 months beginning April this year.
FrontPageAfrica has obtained a copy of a communication from the Acting Managing Director of the Airport to the Management of Royal Air Maroc apologizing for the blackout that occurred on the runway when one of its flights, AT565, was about to land. This incident which occurred at about 4 AM on February 21, 2022, forced the pilot to abort the landing. The flight landed in Freetown, instead.
According to the Airport management, it is working assiduously to ensure that such a serious incident does not reoccur.
The management stated that it intends to upgrade its electricity supply by inter-connecting to the national power grid which is currently under construction to ensure stable, uninterrupted power to customers.
The airport management also lamented the impact of the 50km Robertsfield Road construction on access to the airport by staff and passengers, especially during the early morning hours. The current two-lane highway is noted for recording some of the nastiest accidents. With the ongoing expansion to four lanes, it is expected that the road would be a superhighway.
Air Maroc and Asky Airlines are among flights that land at the RIA at about 4-5 AM on their schedules. By this, passengers have to be ready for check-in no later than 4 AM. This also means they must travel the extremely dark and dangerous highway during the ungodly hour to catch their flight.
“…considering the proposed electrification implementation work plan, the airport
power supply will be shut down for related installation and construction works between 0100Z to 0600Z daily. The timeframe for construction, installation, transmission, and distribution is 6 – 10 months, depending on weather and logistics. The work is scheduled to commence on April 24th, 2022,” the airport management stated.
It added, “We wish to request your good office, in the spirit of partnership, to consider readjusting your flight schedule (slot time) to ROB, preferably any time before midnight. This adjustment will allow the airport to effectively and efficiently provide uninterrupted services to you and all our customers while maintaining safety standards.”