At least ten flights were Sunday diverted to Mombasa’s Moi International Airport after a Fokker 50 plane was forced to crash-land at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi.
The plane which was arriving from Wajir, Northern Kenya, with 6 passengers crash-landed after its landing gear failed to drop. No one was injured in 11am incident.
There was however huge traffic at the Moi International Airport as the 874 passengers from seven international, two local and one cargo flights arrived.
Speaking on behalf of the Airport manager, Airport Security Services Manager Peter Jakaiti said they began receiving diverted flights from Nairobi at about 11.18am.
“We began receiving flights from JKIA after the runway was blocked after an aircraft had a problem when landing. So far we have received a total of 10 air-crafts which include a cargo craft from Johannesburg.
We do have two international flights (Ethiopian Airline and My Travel) that are scheduled to depart at 1700hour, once those ones depart we’ll have more room to accommodate passengers that have been diverted here,” he said.
Among the flights diverted include, Kenya Airways, Etihad and Air Qatar which were from Entebbe, Dar es Salaam, Poland, Johannesburg and Juba.
Renowned Kenyan dance-hall sensation Mohamed Swabir aka Redsan who was in Mombasa for the New Year Celebrations also had his flight delayed. He told the Nation despite the delay they were not in a hurry to get to Nairobi.
“My flight was for 1340hours, I got here on time but there was a delay. We had a gig here with Ali Kiba and AY from Tanzania at the Flamingo Beach Resort and the Mshikaki Street Bash organized by Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho.
I know there are some delays but we have been told they are sorting it out in Nairobi.
Such delays are common especially during holiday seasons but this is not like the normal delays we are used to, above all safety comes first, we don’t mind waiting as long as they tell us everything is okay and we can travel at certain time, we are good to go,” Mr Swabir said.
Mr Jakaiti said they were in communication with JKIA officials to see how soon the runway would be cleared so that the flights schedules resume.
He insisted that they had the capacity to handle the number of passengers and maintained they were not inconvenienced in any way.