Beware of falling glass at Chennai airport

A total of 40 glass panels have fallen since modernisation of Chennai airport


Chennai airport’s new terminal was inaugurated in January 2013. 
Photo: Hemant Mishra/Mint
Chennai airport’s new terminal was inaugurated in January 2013. Photo: Hemant Mishra/Mint

New Delhi: One glass panel, on average, fell at Chennai airport every month since it was modernised three years back, twice injuring travelling passengers, according to aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Pusapati Raju.

A total of 40 glass panels have fallen since modernisation of Chennai airport, Raju told the Parliament on Tuesday.

Of these 26 cases were due to “spontaneous breakage”and 14 were due to accidental breakage.

There were injuries to passengers in two such cases, he said adding Airports Authority of India, which runs these airports, has now placed physical barricades to prevent accidents from falling glass.

In his replies Raju did not identify the firms that installed these panels or mention the action taken against them.

Chennai airport’s new terminal was inaugurated in January 2013.

It was developed at a cost of Rs.2,015 crore increasing the annual handling capacity to 16 million domestic passengers and 7 million international passengers from 6 million and 3 million, respectively.

It has come under significant criticism since for the quality of its facilities and, of course, the falling glass.

“There is nothing world class about it. There are so many incidents that it almost seems like glass panels are falling at Chennai airport every week,” said Mohan Ranganathan, a Chennai-based air safety expert who uses the airport often.