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Cotabato and Gen San airports updates on 5.3 magnitude earthquake issued by CAAP

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Updates have been issued by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) after a 5.3 magnitude earthquake occurred yesterday, July 17, 2023 at 11:35 p.m. The earthquake’s epicenter was located approximately 49 kilometers south 44° west of Maitum (Sarangani).

CAAP reported no damages to airport facilities at Cotabato Airport and General Santos Airport. Managers of both airports immediately assessed and inspected the structures and confirmed the absence of any significant damage to passenger terminal buildings and other airport facilities. General Santos Airport has resumed normal flight operations, with both the terminal and runway open and fully operational.

Its spokesman Eric Apolonio said that while there are no reports of expected damage, PHIVOLCS has advised that aftershocks are possible following an earthquake of this magnitude. CAAP already coordinated with local authorities and agencies to prepare in the event of any aftershocks.

CAAP will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide necessary updates to ensure the smooth and safe operation of flights in the affected areas, he said.

On the other hand, Cotabato Airport, an airport whose airside operations are managed by the CAAP, is still closed for development from July 6, 2023 (02:10 PM) to August 18, 2023 (04:00 PM), as stated in the notice to airmen (NOTAM) it has released for the information of stakeholders.

The closure is due to the ongoing asphalt overlay and repainting of the runway markings. During this period, the airport will not be operating fixed wing aircraft and no commercial flights will be received.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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