Nairobi airport burns down.

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This topic contains 19 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  SimonS1 20 Sep 2013
at 10:11

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  • Anonymous


    Not before time! The terminal is filthy, hot, congested, ill-lit, with frequent power cuts and a mountain of lost cases in the baggage hall – an embarrassment to Kenya. When I was there in April the new terminal was half-built, just the steel framework, so I guess this will give them the impetus to get the construction moving faster.


    Not been there, but today is 15 years to the day since the U.S. embassy bombing in Nairobi. This is possibly an attack on Kenya since there will be a major impact on the economy from the loss of the airport.


    Reading the first post, it seems not a terrible loss to Kenyan air travellers. However, huge loss of livelihood to local flower and fruit/veg producers who we rely on to supply our supermarkets.

    Evidently the authority in charge of the airport was not in possession of a single fire engine, having had to sell the three of them off four years ago because of a US$1000 debt..


    This is a horrible development. Teriible for passengers, staff, Kenya Airways, Kenyans and Africans throughout the continent.

    Nairobi is a major hub in Africa and KQ has been expanding in a gradual but dynamic way. They also have 77W and 787 on the way. . .


    So a major airport without its own fire cover then? Sounds deliberate.


    When i saw a report about the fire fighters arriving almost 2hrs after the fire started i just thought about the ET dreamliner that caught fire at LHR and wondered how is it that an aiport is allowed to operate without it’s own fire brigade. Pretty shocking and terrifying.

    Domestic and cargo services are set to resume this afternoon. Remember the cargo center was the old Embakasi airport. Sadly this is such a high season of travel so i expect the economic setback to be huuge.

    I hadn’t thought about the embassy bombings. When it happened i was about 100m from the embassy and it was horrific.


    A very tragic day. Surely Michael O’Leary can generate some publicity from this …


    despite JKIA being old and tired, it is a critical regional hub and this will be a serious loss to all those pax on holiday (middle of migration season etc) and business that ely on air cago fo the foreign markets. I feel for Kenyas loss today deeply and hope this is fixed soonest for all our sales


    This does genuinely beggar belief. Just listened to a BBC radio interview with a passenger who got out of the terminal and who watched the fire spread for over one and a half hours before fire-engines arrived from Nairobi proper! By this time, what had been a localised fire had spread into a general conflagration consuming the entire terminal building.

    So if JKIA does not have a fire service, how is it allowed to operate?


    I was back there last month and it hadn’t changed much since I lived there in the 1990s.

    However before we all write it off the Kenyans are quite innovative and there will be a work around in place soon. Cargo flights have already resumed and the KQ flight from London that lands tomorrow is definitely going ahead. It seems to be only the arrivals area (in the centre of the ‘loop’) that is affected and despite being a major regional hub it isn’t that busy.


    The real problem was not the airport fire service (whose training, vehicles and equipment are not intended to deal with structure fires) but rather the essentially non availability of a municipal fire service and absence of a working fire hydrant system.

    On the other hand, the extent of the damage and speed of spread does show that automatic fire sprinkler systems are a necessity, not a luxury for airport buildings, especially in the developing world.


    I passed through NBO last week and many of the shops and lounges had been abandoned, anyone know what happened to them all?


    Vistaro – I hope they took their dodgy fake champagne with them! We once bought a bottle of Moet enroute to Zanzibar many years ago, and when we opened it, it has goodness knows what in it, with a shaved cork! Thank goodness we opened it ourselves and didn’t give it to someone else as a gift!



    The duty free shops have in the past been operated by a certain controversial/corrupt figure called Kamlesh Pattni. The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) refused to extend his lease which expired on July 31st. A court had indeed extended the lease till August 9th but someone couldn’t be bothered so the KAA had the shops demolished at around 12:30a.m!

    Indeed there had been major complains in the last couple of years of the shops being overpriced and having some bogus goods. The intention is that KAA is to operate these shops and not an outsider whose name pops up whenever bogus deals are discussed.

    Only came across the story yesterday after the fire with people wondering if it was an act of revenge after the duty free shops incident.

    Oh, and Terminal 4 (an interim solution to increase capacity to 9mil) is apparently still on course to open in October and the Greenfield Terminal, the final part of the upgrade, should open in 2015/2016.

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