IPOH, Sept 13 — More than one thousand passengers have been affected by a flurry of cancelled flights at the Sultan Azlan Shah (SAS) Airport due to haze.
Airport manager Mohd Ali Osman said 549 passengers, who were supposed to fly out to Singapore and Johor Baru, were left stranded at the airport after their flights were cancelled.
He said that another 555 passengers who were supposed to arrive at the airport on four flights were diverted to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport (SAAS) in Subang after the flights could not land due to visibility issues.
“This is the worst situation we ever faced as before this the flights has been delayed, but can eventually fly on the same day.
“However, this time we need to cancel the flights for today and reschedule it for tomorrow. Hopefully, there will be rain tonight to ease the haze,” he told reporters when met at the airport.
Mohd Ali said that the affected airlines were three flights from Scoot, one from AirAsia and one from Malindo.
“The flights were supposed to travel from Singapore-Ipoh-Johor Bahru (AirAsia), Ipoh-Johor Bahru-Ipoh (Malindo), and Singapore-Ipoh-Singapore (Scoot),” he said.
He said that the flight visibility went down to 2,500 metres causing a disruption in operations.
Passenger Desmond Wan, 36, who was stranded at the airport after his flight to Johor Bahru was cancelled, said that he had rented a van as he needs to deliver a wedding dress for his cousin’s wedding tomorrow in Singapore.
“The airline has rescheduled the flight for tomorrow, but we can’t take the risk as we can’t predict the weather.
“We are hoping that there would not be heavy traffic on the highway as many are travelling back to their hometown as Monday is also a public holiday,” said Wan.
Wan, who is travelling with a family of seven, said they spent about six hours at the airport today.
Another passenger, Norma Nordin, 47, from Singapore said that her airline had provided accommodation and food as their flight to Singapore was rescheduled for 3.20pm tomorrow.
“I came to Ipoh for a holiday with my husband and two children aged eight and nine. We were supposed to go back today, but due to the haze the flights has been postponed.
“We can’t do much. I guess we just have to wait and hopefully the skies will be clear tomorrow,” she said.