More than 2,300 passengers bound for Manila have been stranded in airports in Davao and Soccsksargen regions since Sunday afternoon following the eruption of Taal Volcano in Luzon.
The canceled flight affected 1,715 passengers at the Francisco Bangoy International Airport here and 600 passengers at the General Santos International Airport.
Davao Airport police station officer-in-charge Major Ronel Tesorero said at least 20 flights bound to Manila were cancelled. Planes coming from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila were also cancelled.
Tesorero said they fielded some 40 airport police officers, including teams from the Special Operations Unit and Explosive Ordnance Division, to monitor and ensure the safety of the stranded passengers.
In General Santos City, at least four flights from NAIA to this city have been canceled since Sunday.
Edgardo Cueto, manager of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines in General Santos City, said the flight cancellations affected some 600 passengers flying to Manila from here.
“We provided the stranded passengers with water and crackers,” he said.
Despite announcements that flights were canceled Monday morning, many passengers going to Manila still proceeded to the airport here hoping they could fly out, Cueto added.
“In the end, the stranded passengers decided to go home and re-booked their flights,” he said.
Cueto said that Cebu Pacific Air cancelled three flights and Philippine Airlines also cancelled one flight.
Located in Batangas, Taal Volcano erupted Sunday afternoon, sending plumes a kilometer above the crater.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology classified Taal Volcano’s activity as a phreatic eruption.
The eruption brought ashfall to nearby areas, including Metro Manila.
NAIA canceled airport operations following Sunday afternoon’s volcanic eruption.
It resumed partial operations at noontime Monday.
As of 12 p.m. Monday, Cueto said they were still waiting for advise from their office in Manila if the scheduled flights to and from here would resume later in the afternoon.
Flights between the Mindanao airports and the cities of Iloilo and Cebu were not affected. With mindanews