A fire drill was organized at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport on Friday to be implemented in the event of an emergency.
The fire drill was organized to create awareness about what should be done if a plane catches fire at the airport.
It is to be noted that the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has issued a rule to conduct drills every two years on how to deal with a fire at an international airport. Such exercises are regularly held at international airports in Bangladesh.
A dummy aircraft parked next to the airport taxiway was set on fire for the drill. At 1:17 am, the Air Traffic Control Tower reported the fire on the dummy plane. Four minutes later, at 1:21 am, a fire service vehicle arrived at the airport to put out the fire. At the same time, the fire service vehicles of the air force also came. At that moment, an armed force of the Air Force surrounded the plane. The health department ambulance rescued the injured passengers and took them to the hospital. An Air Force helicopter arrived at the scene to rush the critically injured to the hospital. The drill ended at 1:43 am.
Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport Executive Director Group Captain AHM Touhid-ul Ahsan conducted the drill. Civil Aviation Authority, Bangladesh Fire Service and Civil Defense, Air Force, Army, RAB, Ansar, Health Department, Kurmitola Hospital and many organizations including Biman Bangladesh Airlines took part in the drill. State Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism Md Mahbub Ali said that although the exercise was organized for the purpose of obtaining a certificate from the International Civil Aviation Organization, its experience should be helpful for everyone.
“It will be possible to use it properly in the event of a real accident. Employees of all the agencies working at the airport should be ready at all times to prevent and deal with any kind of accident. It should be kept in mind that the security of the airport is associated with the image of the country. No compromise should be made to ensure the safety of the passengers. Security breaches will not be tolerated,” he added.
He further said that as per the directions of the Prime Minister, effective steps have been taken to improve the security system of all the airports of the country and to prevent accidents.
“Security has been beefed up at all airports in the country. International standard passenger safety has been ensured at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport. At present, the security system of the country's airports is much better and more modern than before,” he said.
The state minister also said, “Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport is the main airport of the country. Most of the people of the country travel through this airport. Work is underway on the third terminal for the development of passenger services. The third terminal of aesthetic beauty will include all the infrastructural facilities. Domestic and foreign passengers will get international quality services while traveling through this terminal.”
Secretary of the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism Mokammel Hossain, Chairman of Civil Aviation Authority Bangladesh Air Vice Marshal Md Mofidur Rahman, Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Maintenance) Air Vice Marshal Sade Uddin Ahmed and Managing Director and CEO of Biman Bangladesh Airlines Dr Abu Saleh Mostafa Kamal were present during this time.