Radar screens at the IGI Airport's Air Traffic Control tower remained blank for nearly 45 minutes on Friday, jeopardizing flight operations, after an electrician on routine maintenance duty unintentionally switched off the main power button.
A worker carrying out an electrical job in Air Traffic Control inadvertently switched off a miniature circuit breaker (MCB) at 12:21 pm, forcing screens to go blank. The system switched to standby power within seconds, but it took around 45 minutes to reboot the consoles and restore the operations completely.
Sources with direct knowledge of the issue said that the mistake affect more than 20 flights. However, a spokesperson for the AAI said the power was restored after 10 minutes.
Speaking about the glitch, the spokesperson said, "Around 12.21 pm there was power failure but standby power took over, for 10 minutes. After this, the power was restored and there was no disruption."
The power failure made primary as well as back-up radar systems to go blank. These systems offer the complete coordinates likes altitude, speed, horizontal separation etc. of all aircraft over stretches of north India, and thus guide aircrafts to avoid collisions in the air.
Traffic controllers averted any disaster by manually bringing in arriving aircrafts.