Pune: The Airlines Operators Committee (AOC), Pune, had organised FOD (foreign object debris) removal and ‘no photography drive’ on Wednesday at Apron area airside of Pune Airport, based at Lohegaon. The participants included in the drive were airlines staff, representatives from the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).
The drive conducted by AOC was to create common awareness amongst all the employees working at the airport to ensure Pune airfield was always clean from FODs and photography was restricted as Pune being the defence airfield.
“FOD is an object that does not belong in or near aeroplanes and as a result can injure airport or airline personnel and damage aeroplanes. A FOD-prevention programme of training, facility inspection, maintenance and coordination between all affected parties can minimise FOD and its effects,” said a committee member.
Dhairyashil Vandekar, an aviation expert and analyst, said, “The initiatives being taken by the airlines at the airport to keep the operational area at civil enclave safe. The airlines and their handling agents were responsible for ensuring that the parking bay, ramp and ground equipment movement and parking areas were clear of FOD. With so much construction activity going around the airport, the airlines need to carry out such campaigns to create awareness amongst their staff about the FOD threat and take measures to control it.”
“FODs were usually found on the runways, taxiways, ramp area, parking bays and other areas. They can be anything from debris like building material, stones, gravel, apron or pavement fragments to nuts, bolts, rivets etc. FOD can be a big safety concern as not only do they have the potential to cause serious damage to the aircraft and equipment operating on the airside but also serious injury to the personnel working in these areas,” Vandekar said.
“I slightly differ on the ‘no photography’ at airport issue as I am of the opinion that in today’s modern times when significant number of youngsters are travelling by air world over, such restrictions are being dropped and authorities are trying to make airports more passenger-friendly by allowing selfies and photography at their airports and make their travel through the airport more memorable. Youngsters are excited about posting their selfies taken at the airport on social media. Barring certain sensitive defence areas, selfies and photography must also be permitted at the Lohegaon airports civil enclave,” Vandekar added.