Cebu Pacific aircraft removed in Iloilo; airport to reopen soon

The Iloilo International Airport is set to resume normal operations following the successful removal of a disabled Cebu Pacific Air Airbus A320 aircraft.

Crews successfully remove disabled Cebu Pacific aircraft from Iloilo Airport runway, clearing the way for operations to resume. (Photo by CAAP)

Experts from the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) and the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) collaborated with Cebu Pacific to clear the runway of any debris.

As a result of the clearing operations, Cebu Pacific has canceled four additional flights:

  • 5J451/452 Manila-Iloilo-Manila
  • 5J348/347 Davao-Iloilo-Davao
  • DG6408/6409 Cebu-Iloilo-Cebu
  • 5J261 Iloilo-Puerto Princesa

On Friday evening, October 13, Cebu Pacific flight 5J461 veered off the runway upon landing, prompting an emergency evacuation. All 180 passengers were safely evacuated and transported to the airport terminal.

A passenger described feeling the aircraft bounce three times upon touchdown, with a force strong enough to cause passengers to hit their heads against the seats in front of them.

The aircraft sustained substantial damage after coming to rest on soft ground beside the runway, with the nose landing gear collapsing. This created difficulties during the removal process.

The airport's closure resulted in numerous flight delays and diversions, affecting many passengers.

Cebu Pacific responded by organizing recovery flights to Roxas Airport to transport stranded passengers from Iloilo. The airline also offered complimentary land transfers between Roxas and Iloilo.