Emergency drill shows airport ready for disaster, says official-A A +A
Sunday, July 1, 2012
THE Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA) conducted last Tuesday the Mactan Crash and Rescue Exercises (Macrex) 2012, which tested its capability in responding to airport accidents.
MCIAA Assistant General Manager Romeo Bersonda said that Macrex is done every two years as a requirement of the International Civil Aviation Organization (Icao).
Icao mandates a full-scale aerodrome emergency exercise at intervals not exceeding two years.
Macrex is also a national requirement of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) under its Manual of Standards (MOS) as incorporated in Administrative Order 139, specifically Section 10.7.1.4.
In the Macrex yesterday, the airport emergency drill was based on aircraft crash situation on the airfield.
In reference to the Mactan Airport Emergency Plan (Maep), this scenario falls under Emergency Plan No. 1 or the aircraft accident at airport.
Public Affairs Manager Mary Ann Dimabayao said the assumed magnitude of the aircraft accident necessitated the activation of the emergency plan wherein the airport’s Primary Emergency Responders and the Secondary Emergency Responders from the different mutual aid agencies are called upon to respond.
The scenario was a delayed flight. A passenger plane carrying 75 passengers and crew is on its final approach at Runway 22 at Mactan Airport.
At an altitude of 3,000 feet, the pilot radioed Mactan Control Tower (MCT) that there’s an emergency situation in the aircraft that was forcing him to prepare for an emergency landing.
The MCT supervisor immediately notified MCIAA’s Rescue and Firefighting Division (RFD) and the operation center of the Emergency Plan (Emplan) 3 alarm for a full emergency.
The MCT lost communication with the aircraft but continued to visually track it as it headed for a crash landing off the runway. In just a few seconds, Macex-2012 crash landed at northwest side of Runway 22.
MCT immediately upgraded the alarm to Emplan 1 (on-airport crash).
Col. Melvin Gayotin, the airport police chief, was designated as Emplan commander.
When the plane crashed and caught fire, rescuers moved to action and brought the passengers to different hospitals. Two fire trucks arrived in five minutes and doused the burning plane.
Another two fire trucks arrived and helped put out the fire.
Supt. Ritchie Medardo A. Posadas, chief of the 7th Police Center for Aviation Security, said the exercise showed that MCIAA has the capability to respond to airport accidents.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 02, 2012.