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Indonesia's Palu airport to undergo repairs after disasters

Indonesia's transport ministry says efforts are underway to repair damaged infrastructure at Palu's Mutiara Sis Al Jufri airport, after the town and its surrounding regions suffered an earthquake and tsunami on 28 September.

Following the disasters, around 500m of the 2,500m runway 15/33 was damaged. Initially, a 250m section of runway 15 will be repaired over a two week period, allowing Airbus and Boeing narrowbodies to resume operations, says the ministry.

Subsequently, a 300m section of runway 33 will undergo up to two months of reconstruction at a cost of Rp60 billion ($3.95 million).

At the same time, the airport's passenger terminal, office buildings, and air traffic control tower will undergo repairs.

Indonesia's airports director Polana Banguningsih explains that damage to the terminal was severe, due to soil movements taking place during the earthquake. Up to Rp20 billion will be required to repair the terminal.

She was unable to specify the time necessary for terminal repairs, citing the need for damage assessment.

Palu airport resumed limited operations on 30 September, and commercial flights are permitted to operate. However, priority is given to emergency, search and rescue, as well as humanitarian operations due to limited parking capacity. Flights can only be conducted under visual flight rules for now.

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