Dubai airport restricts arrivals to manage storm-induced delays

Dubai airport restricts arrivals to manage storm-induced delays
/ bne IntelliNews
By bnm Gulf bureau April 19, 2024

Dubai International Airport (DXB), one of the world's busiest, has limited incoming flights for 48 hours starting at noon local time (0800 GMT) on April 19.

Heavy rain battered Persian Gulf states, causing flash floods that killed 20 people and disrupted flights at several of the busiest airports in the region. Flooding has been reported in several countries and emirates, including Oman, Iran, Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. Al Ain in the east of the Emirates saw 254 mm (10 inches) falling in less than 24 hours. Although much of the flooding has subsided the backlogs now reach into days in some instances for the world’s second busiest airport.

“We urge you to only come to the airport if your airline has confirmed the departure of your flight. As we're currently facing congestion, please do NOT arrive too early. Aim to get to your terminal no earlier than 2 hours before your departure time,” the airport said on X.

Emirates, the city's flagship airline, has halted check-ins for passengers transiting through Dubai until 2359 GMT April 19, though direct flights to Dubai remain unaffected.

Air India also announced it had halted flights from Dubai International Airport for the rest of the day and was “doing our best” to get customers re-accommodated.

Neighbouring Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways has resumed normal flight operations.

The storm, which also affected Oman, resulted in 21 fatalities across the Gulf, including southern Iran, and continues to impact travel and infrastructure in the region.

Meanwhile, Iran has halted all flights until further notice following an alleged Israeli strike on both Isfahan and Tabriz earlier on April 19.

Flight corridors across the region remain under pressure as Iran and Israel continue to increase tensions among each other, with the vast majority of Gulf carrier flights now having to reroute through Saudi Arabia and Egyptian airspace.

Typically, flights heading to Russia and Europe would use Iranian, Iraqi and Turkish airspace. The additional flight times have caused massive backlogs for several carriers across the region.

Turkish Airlines are continuing direct flights over Tehran and Iran despite the travel warnings and replacement services being used by other countries.