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Haiti - Insecurity : The attack of 3 air traffic controllers threatens the operation of PAP International Airport
02/11/2022 09:41:31

Haiti - Insecurity : The attack of 3 air traffic controllers threatens the operation of PAP International Airport
In a note dated November 1st, 2022, the National Office of Civil Aviation (OFNAC) strongly deplores the attack by armed individuals near Toussaint Louverture Internation Airport, against its employees, including 3 air traffic controllers, while that they were going to their place of work on October 29th.

During the assault, one of the controllers was shot in the leg and rushed to a hospital in the metropolitan area. He is out of danger.

Following this incident, OFNAC quickly took all necessary measures to :

1. Allow the strengthening of security systems around the employees of the institution and more particularly air traffic controllers;

2. Make the appropriate follow-up with the State authorities concerned, including the National Police of Haiti (PNH) in order to initiate an investigation and prevent such an incident in the future;

3. Take over for controllers who are unable to operate after the event by other equally competent controllers in order to keep the national airspace open;

4. Keep the channels of communication open between the various OFNAC departments, air traffic controllers and their representatives with a view to adopting concerted actions to continue improving the working conditions of these technicians who are valued by the institution.

For its part, the International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers Association (IFATCA) which brings together more than 50,000 air traffic controllers in 133 countries, in a note published on the federation's website, says it is worried "[...] Health and well-being of these essential air traffic control and aviation system professionals in Haiti are of the utmost concern to us, which is why appropriate dialogue must be held with Haitian civil aviation officials regarding their safety" a step that IFATCA made, deploring the [incomprehensible] lack of response from OFNAC...

IFATCA points out that the use of "[...] former air traffic controllers who are not qualified, rated, licensed or certified to occupy air traffic control positions, poses problems for air traffic safety in Haiti."

The association recalls in conclusion "[...] Among the objectives of the Federation are the promotion of the safety, efficiency and regularity of international air navigation, as well as the safeguarding of the interests of air traffic controllers. In this case, the life of the air traffic controllers is in danger."

SL/ HaitiLibre

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