MANILA, Philippines – Stormy weather remains over Cagayan, Apayao and Batanes as tropical storm Falcon lashes Northern Luzon.
As of 5:00 a.m. on Wednesday (July 17), the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Falcon is already in the coastal waters of Aparri, Cagayan.
It continues to move towards west northwest at a speed of 35 kph with maximum sustained winds of 65 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 80 kph.
Tropical cyclone wind signal (TCWS) remain in several areas of the country.
Signal #2 (Winds of greater than 61 kph and up to 120 kph may be expected in at least 24 hours.)
Cagayan including Babuyan Group of Islands
Signal #1 (Winds of 30-60 kph may be expected in at least 36 hours or intermittent rains may be expected within 36 hours.)
northern part of Aurora
northern part of Nueva Vizcaya
northern part of Quirino
Meanwhile, TS Falcon continues to enhance the southwest monsoon or habagat which is bringing rains including in Metro Manila.
Moderate to heavy rains are expected in Ilocos Region, Cordillera Administrative Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Cavite, Batangas, Occidental Mindoro, northern Palawan including Calamian and Cuyo Islands, Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo, and Guimaras.
Light to moderate with at times heavy will affect Metro Manila, CALABARZON, Bicol Region, and the rest of Visayas, and the rest of MIMAROPA.
Residents in the affected areas must prepare and stay alert for as they may be at risk of flooding and landslides. They are advised to take precautionary measures, coordinate with concerned government agencies and continue monitoring for updates from PAGASA.
Meanwhile, sea travel remains risky over the seaboards of areas under TCWS, the eastern seaboard of Central Luzon, the seaboard of Southern Luzon, and the eastern and western seaboards of Visayas.
TS Falcon, according to PAGASA, may exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Friday (19 July) morning.
MANILA, Philippines – The Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) will not fine Cebu Pacific over its series of flight cancellations from April 28 to May 10, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said on Wednesday.
The DOTr explained that no fines will be imposed after CAB found that the concerns of passengers affected by the flight cancellations have been handled properly.
“Affected passengers’ concerns were found to be handled properly by Cebu Pacific in compliance with the Air Passenger Bill of Rights. Thus, the imposition of penalties was not considered at present,” the DOTr said in a statement.
Instead, the CAB directed Cebu Pacific to submit within 30 days a concrete plan stating measures it will take to prevent further inconvenience to passengers.
“We are hoping that Cebu Pacific will immediately comply with the order to resolve this issue. Hindi na natin maibabalik pa ‘yung dinulot na inconvenience these cancellations have caused. But moving forward, we aim to have more substantial actions so that our passengers will not have to suffer,” DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said.
The air transport regulator also recommended that a stern warning be given to Cebu Pacific to exercise diligence necessary in maintaining stability and reliability of air transport service to the riding public.
The DOTr said that during its hearings held on May 2 and May 6, Cebu Pacific said that it was forced to cancel hundreds of its flights due to ongoing efforts to improve on-time performance (OTP) as its aircraft takes 49 to 66 minutes before being able to take off.
The flight cancellations will “create space” in their flight and crew inventory, “make way for operational recovery,” and “minimize rolling delays,” the Cebu Pacific noted.
CAB also found that the airliner had a “crewing problem,” as it concluded that “the additional time spent by the on-duty crew on the tarmac consumes the working hours and reserves that were supposed to be utilized at a much later schedule.”
While the CAB understands the cancellations as a recuperative measure for the airline, it pointed out that it cannot be made at the expense of the riding public.
“We want to remind airlines to consider the welfare of its passengers by avoiding short notice. The people have paid for these flights and have made their schedules accordingly,” CAB Executive Director Carmelo Arcilla said.
“While we understand the corrective measures being made to improve OTP, maximum effort should be done so that these measures are not at the expense of our passengers,” he added.
For the DOTr’s part, Secretary Tugade has directed the daily publication of airline OTP in major airports nationwide.
The DOTr noted Cebu Pacific’s OTP was pushed to an average of 51.16%, with lows of around 30% in March due to the hour-long stay on the tarmac. (with details from Joan Nano)
Cebu Pacific was forced to cancel 44 domestic flights scheduled from April 28-30.
Based on the released advisory on Sunday (April 28), Cebu Pacific management said they need to temporarily reduce the number of flights due to the current operating conditions, particularly in their Manila hub in Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
“Efforts have been made to minimize the disruption to our passengers in the past week. However, we realize that current operating conditions, particularly in our Manila hub, necessitate a temporary reduction of flights,” the advisory reads.
5J395/5J396 Manila-Cagayan de Oro (Laguindingan)-Manila
5J991/5J992 Manila-General Santos-Manila
5J641/5J642 Manila-Puerto Princesa-Manila
5J513/5J514 Manila-San Jose-Manila
The airline added that passengers may rebook their flights free of charge, as long as it is within 30 days from the original flight schedule.
Passengers on cancelled flights may take any of the following options:
1. Rebook flights for travel within 30 days from original departure date, free of charge 2. Get a full refund 3. Place the full cost of the ticket in a Travel Fund 4. Re-route to / from alternate airports for travel within 30 days, subject to availability of seats
“These flight cancellations should help stabilize flight timings, improve on time performance and reduce inconvenience to our passengers,” according to the statement.—Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.)
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