ZAMBOANGA CITY-- Commercial flights here were cancelled early Saturday after the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) closed the runway of the Zamboanga International Airport (ZIA).
The CAAP was forced to issue the closure order after a heavy equipment of a construction firm undertaking an asphalt overlay project got stuck in the middle of the runway.
Reynaldo Alforte, CAAP-Zamboanga officer-in-charge, said the asphalt overlay works usually start after the last flight out of ZIA in the evening until early morning the next day.
Alforte said the project began three weeks ago and will be completed in a month's time.
However, he said, one of the heavy equipment of the construction firm undertaking the project conked out and got stuck while they were working Friday night.
Cancelled were the Manila-Zamboanga and vice-versa; Cebu-Zamboanga; Zamboanga-Tawi-Tawi and vice-versa; and Zamboanga-Cebu morning flights.
Due to the cancellation, the Manila-Zamboanga flight of the Philippine Airlines (PAL) was diverted to the Mactan-Cebu International Airport while that of Cebu-Pacific has returned to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City.
Alforte said commercial flights resumed mid-day Saturday as they re-opened the ZIA runway at 10 a.m.
ZIA's mid-day flight is that of Davao-Zamboanga and vice-versa. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency