Monday, February 14, 2011

Russian Transport Ministry names responsible for December air traffic chaos

The Russian Transport Ministry's final report has blamed the pre-New Year traffic chaos at Russian airports on the heads of Russia's largest airline Aeroflot, airports' management, Federal Air Transport Agency officials, and flawed laws, Russian daily Kommersant said on Friday.

A total of 801 flights were delayed, 408 cancelled and 20,000 people were stranded at airports as a result of transport officials and airport employees' uncoordinated work following an ice storm that hit the entire territory of Central Russia in late December, the paper said.

Quoting a report by a special commission created to study the aviation officials' response the ice storm, Kommersant said the Domodedovo staff had failed to repair electricity lines broken by falling trees during three days since the storm broke over Moscow.

"In foreign countries, electricity lines at such facilities are laid underground, which helps avoid such failures," Transport Minister Igor Levitin was quoted as saying.

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