Flights disrupted by fire alarm at Piarco


(Trinidad Express) Flights at Piarco International Airport were temporarily grounded for just over an hour yesterday after a fire alarm went off in the control tower of the Civil Aviation Authority.

The authority’s general manager, Hayden Newton, told Express that the alarm went off at 11.50 a.m.

He said that, in accordance with protocols, the Fire Service was called, the runway closed, and checks were made. However, there were no signs of flames or smoke.

After an extensive examination of the compound, flights were  allowed to resume at about 1.35 p.m. yesterday.

While the cause of the alarm going off wasn’t known up to press time yesterday, officials believe that a technical glitch may be to blame.

Ten departure flights, and six arrival flights, both domestic and international, were affected.

However, it wasn’t clear if the international arrivals had to be diverted to Tobago, but Express was told that this is typical procedure.

“The fire alarm system at the air traffic control tower at the civil aviation authority went off today at 11.50 a.m., and as a consequence they called in the Fire Service to do the normal checks in accordance with protocols. As a consequence of the checks, they immediately closed the runway, and it was only after they completed these checks was it reopened at 1.35 p.m. In total six arrivals were affected… and this was both international and domestic flights. Ten departures were also affected, including CAL (Caribbean Airlines) and American Airlines flights,” Newton said.


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