The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has laid down a procedure to mitigate flight delays.

In a circular it stated: “Civil Aviation Requirement Section 3, Series C, Part II and VIII stipulates that the operator shall get the flight schedules approved by DGCA at least 30 days in advance and operate services in accordance with the flight schedules so approved.”

Should the flight fail to take off within five minutes of getting a green signal from the air traffic control for take off, it will be pushed to the back of the queue and wait until the next available time slot.

Currently, if the flight scheduled to take off doesn’t do so on time, it in turn delays others in the queue behind it too. With the new order, those organised for a timely take off as per procedures needn’t be inconvenienced any further as defaulters will be pushed back endlessly.

The order goes on to state: “Sequence of departures shall be decided by ATC based on the position and readiness of aircraft approaching the entry point of the runway. Aircraft shall complete all pre-departure checks and cabin procedures prior to entering the runway and start rolling as soon as take off clearance is issued by ATC. Airlines not adhering to the approved time slots shall be liable to lose the historicity in the next schedule except in the case of scheduled flights subjected to flow measures during the capacity constrained period.”

A tardy performance on the runway will garner a poor track record for the airlines who may not be taken in priority for sought-after slots during peak hours.

“In case of weather related or emergency related delays, Watch Supervisory Officer (WSO) shall be responsible for allocation of alternate slots,” DGCA says.