Mumbai, March, 2017: With a view to examine the prudence and efficacy of the emergency response plan to cope with an aircraft emergency, Mumbai International Airport Limited (GVK MIAL) conducted a Full-Scale Aerodrome Emergency Exercise – ‘Operation Black Panther’ at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (GVK CSIA) in Mumbai, between 10.00 am and 2.00 pm on 9th March, 2017. In a first-of-its-kind exercise held jointly with Hong-Kong based Cathay Pacific airline, a simulated aircraft disaster was enacted as a part of the mock drill.
The four – hour long exercise helped in assessing and evaluating the preparedness of all response teams involved in the drill including stakeholders at CSIA involved in handling aircraft emergency situations. This exercise provided an opportunity to response teams from CSIA’s various safety units, including Fire & Emergency services, Terminals, Airside Operations, Engineering & Maintenance, Security and Medical services, to put their emergency training and skills to test. The mock drill also helped to measure the preparedness of local emergency response units that assist MIAL during a crisis.
Around 10 major hospitals that included Leelavati, Nanavati, Seven Hills, Kokilaben Ambani, 16 Ambulance services and Government organizations such as Immigration, Customs, CISF, Police and State Disaster Management Cell participated in the drill. To add a sense of reality to the exercise, over 800 volunteers acted as meeters/greeters, injured passengers and flight crew.
A mock drill like this encompassed all aspects of an emergency response and was an opportunity to test the preparedness, in real time situations, of agencies including fire fighting, security, medical services and communication, in overcoming the moments of distress.
The initiative was successfully implemented with full cooperation from important stakeholders such as DGCA, CISF, Customs, Immigration, Air Traffic Control, Mumbai Fire Brigade, Local Police, Airlines, Ground Handling agencies, Hospital Authorities and the State Disaster Management Authority. This exercise reiterated Mumbai airport’s commitment towards passenger safety, an aspect that cannot be compromised on under any circumstance.
According to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) regulations, it is mandatory for all airports and airlines globally to hold this kind of exercise once every two years.
About GVK MIAL
GVK Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd (MIAL) is a Public Private Partnership joint venture between a GVK-led consortium and the Airports Authority of India (AAI). GVK MIAL was awarded the mandate for operating and modernizing Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai (CSIA). Through this transformational initiative, GVK MIAL aims to make CSIA one of the world’s best airports, which consistently delights customers besides being the pride of Mumbai. The new integrated Terminal 2 at CSIA enhances the airport’s capacity to service over 40 million passengers and one million tons of cargo annually.