Delhi starts the new year with thick fog; flights, train services affected

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New Delhi: For the second consecutive day, operations at the Delhi airport have been disrupted this morning after the visibility level on the runways dropped as below as 50 metres. Thick fog covered most parts of Delhi and the National Capital Region leading to slow moving traffic on Day One of 2018. Train services too have been severely hit in Delhi and several other parts of north India. 56 trains headed towards the capital are late and 20 have been rescheduled.

All domestic and international flights to and from the Delhi airport have been put on hold. Departures have been stopped since 6 am. The last arrival was at 6:20 am. Fifteen trains have been cancelled, said the Northern Railways.

On Sunday too, hundreds of passengers at the Delhi airport and railway stations in north India were left stranded after multiple flights and trains got delayed due to dense fog. Visibility levels at the Delhi airport went below 50 metres on Sunday morning. Over 270 flights were delayed, nearly 50 diverted and an estimated 35 cancelled. No flight could take off from the Delhi airport for nearly four hours between 7.30 am and 11.05 am, according to an airport official.

Many took to Twitter to share pictures of the overcrowded domestic terminal where passengers could be seen sitting on floors and occupying staircases.

Take-offs from the Indira Gandhi International Airport require a minimum visibility range of 125 metres. However, as Delhi airport has advanced technology for low-visibility landings, called the CAT IIIB system, aircrafts qualified to land in visibility of 25-50 metres could arrive on Sunday.

Pollution levels in Delhi have shot up in Delhi since last night. The levels of Particulate Matter are in the “Very Poor” category, according to SAFAR (System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research).


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