The Kochi international airport at Nedumbassery on Wednesday suspended all flight operations for four days after water level increased in the airport area following heavy rainfall and the opening of shutters of dams on the Periyar river, PTI reported. The airport will be closed till 2 pm on August 18.
The airport is situated near the banks of the river. The airport authorities had initially decided to stop arrivals between 4 am and 7 am, but then suspended operations till 2 pm.
The airport’s decision came a day after a Kuwait Airways aircraft landed precariously at the airport, damaging a few runway lights, The New Indian Express reported. Heavy rain had drastically brought down the visibility due to which the aircraft could not keep its alignment with centre line correctly.
Flight operations at the airport were suspended on August 10 too after the shutters of the Cheruthoni dam on the Periyar river were opened.
Meanwhile, Kerala was on the edge on Tuesday after the Tamil Nadu government informed that it may release water from the Mullaperiyar dam because of the rising water level. All the 13 shutters of the dam were opened at 2.45 am when the water level touched 140 feet. Three shutters were closed after an hour.
Earlier in the day, the district administration in Idukki decided to relocate 4,000 people living on either side of the dam to relief camps.