Another Normal Day at Brazil Airports: Cancellations, Delays and Chaos

Congonhas airport in São Paulo, Brazil Chaos in Brazilian civil aviation continues this week. From midnight to 10 am today, 43.6 of all flights in the country were cancelled or seriously delayed. On Monday 38% of flights were delayed and another 20% cancelled according to Infraero, the agency that manages the country's airports.

Since the week end chaos in Brazilian air space seems to have become the rule. Of the 1.637 flights scheduled Monday in Brazilian airports, 625 suffered delays of over an hour and another 328 simply did not take off.

On Saturday morning an electric breakdown knocked out the whole air control system in the north of the country affecting communications with Central and North America and forcing flights to be rerouted.

Problems have cascaded since last Tuesday when an Airbus 320 crashed in Congonhas, São Paulo and Brazil's busiest airport, killing, at the last count, 199 people.

The main landing strip has been since closed and was to be reopened Tuesday but hopes dissipated when heavy rainfall forced the collapse of the end of the runway, precisely where the Airbus shot past crashing into a TAM cargo storage and fuel depot. Congonhas is operating with an auxiliary runway.

Infraero president Brigadier José Carlos Pereira said "security comes first and we must take measures to address the issue. I'm afraid passengers will have to pay for increased security and this means higher air rates."

Pilots from TAM and Gol, the main Brazilian airlines, rerouted several flights from Congonhas to Cumbica arguing they feared to land under rainy conditions (as happened with the Airbus tragedy).

Last Friday, three days after Brazil's worst air accident, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva said operations in Congonhas will be drastically reduced and promised a new airport for São Paulo, the country's industrial and trade hub.

An estimated three million people will be affected by the closure of Congonhas.

Pereira. who is under intense pressure from the press and opposition, had stated that Brazil can do without any foreign help, but now has softened his stance saying that Brazil welcomes international cooperation but from "competent organizations" such as the International Aviation Organization.




You May Also Like

Brazil Rebuffs Argentina and Sliding Export Taxes Are Abandoned

The sliding export taxes rule, which applied to grains and oilseeds, triggered a 100-day ...

Brazil’s Lula Goes to Pope’s Funeral with Ecumenical Delegation

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and his delegation, which includes two former presidents, ...

Brazilian Aircraft Maker Embraer Up 32% in Net Revenues

Brazil's aircraft maker Embraer posted growth of 32% in net revenues in the first ...

Brazil On Guard Againt Flood of Cheap China Trinkets

The president of the São Paulo Manufacturer Federation (Federação das Indústrias do Estado de ...

Frequent trouble with air traffic in Brazil has caused delays and long lines

By Killing Probe on Air Traffic, Brazil Misses Chance to Show Public Spirit

Despite the surprises and resentments related to the Brazilian cabinet reform, the subject in  ...

Brazilian Government Gets Better Marks for Education, But Worse for Economic Policy

The CNT/Sensus poll released Tuesday, September 13, shows that people’s evaluation improved in all ...

Rabid Vampire Bats Attack More than 1,300 in Brazil. 23 Die.

Health authorities in northern Brazil are dealing with a wave of vampire bats attacks ...

AIDS: Breaking Patents Is the Only Solution, Says Brazil

Brazil’s Minister of Health, Humberto Costa, said that increases in the quantities spent on ...

Palestinians and Israelis Can Live Side by Side in Peace. Look at Brazil

BrasÀ­lia, the capital city of Brazil, paid two homages to the Palestinian people this ...

Brazil Sets Free Condom Machines in Schools Plus 55 Million Condoms for Carnaval

The Brazilian ministry of Health has begun distributing condoms directly in schools alarmed with ...