The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority [NCAA] has issued weather alert to pilots and airline operators and urged them to exercise extreme caution during flight operations.
The agency noted that this is in recognition of the outset of the rainy season with the attendant thunderstorms. The agency said it expects strict adherence to this directive to ensure the safety of air transportation in Nigeria.
Spokesman for NCAA, Sam Adurogboye stated that the rainy season which is torrential, is prevalent in the Southern and Northern parts of Nigeria, adding that it is usually accompanied by severe thunderstorms which could impact the safety of flight operations.
The aviation regulatory body disclosed that there are many other hazardous weather occurrences such as severe turbulence, microburst or low level wind-shear and occasionally hail events which are bound to affect air navigation.
Adurogboye said NCAA had directed all pilots to recourse to utmost restraint whenever adverse weather is observed or forecast by Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMET).
Pilots and Flight Crews, he reiterated shall mandatorily obtain adequate, en route and destination weather information and briefing from the Nigerian Meteorological Agency [NiMET] Aerodrome Meteorological offices before flight operations.
In the same vein, Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) and Flight Crews/Operators shall have been told to ensure total compliance with all aerodromes operating minima.
His words, ‘It is quite important for all intending air travellers and airline operators to note that in line with Standard and Recommended Practices (SARPs) Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) may temporarily close airspace during inclement weather conditions’.
‘These are adverse weather conditions such as severe thunderstorms, squall lines microburst or low level wind-shear as observed or forecast by NiMET’, he added.