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CAAP assesses airports in Cotabato, GenSan after 5.3-magnitude earthquake

Aviation Updates Philippines – The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) has provided an update on the status of Cotabato Airport and General Santos Airport following a 5.3 magnitude earthquake that struck the region on July 17, 2023, at approximately 11:35 PM. The epicenter of the earthquake was located in the vicinity of Maitum in Sarangani province.

Photo from Department of Transportation (DOTr)

According to CAAP, there were no damages reported to airport facilities at Cotabato Airport and General Santos Airport. Immediately after the earthquake, airport managers conducted thorough assessments and inspections, confirming the absence of any significant damage to passenger terminal buildings and other airport facilities.

The General Santos Airport has fully resumed normal flight operations, with both the terminal and runway declared open and fully operational.

As a safety precaution, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) has cautioned that aftershocks are possible in the aftermath of a 5.3 magnitude earthquake. In response, CAAP has coordinated with local authorities and relevant agencies to ensure preparedness in case of any aftershocks.

Meanwhile, Cotabato Airport, which is currently under CAAP's airside operations management, is closed for development until August 18, 2023. A notice to airmen (NOTAM) issued by CAAP informed stakeholders about the temporary closure, which began on July 6, 2023, at 02:10 PM.

The closure is necessary as the airport undergoes asphalt overlay and repainting of the runway markings. During this period, the airport will not accommodate fixed-wing aircraft, and no commercial flights will be received.

As CAAP continues to closely monitor the situation in both airports, passengers and stakeholders are advised to stay updated with the latest announcements and follow safety protocols during this time. CAAP remains committed to providing necessary updates and maintaining open lines of communication to ensure the smooth and safe operation of flights in the affected areas.

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