SAA cancels flights to Mauritius as storm intensifies

SA Airways (SAA) cancelled flights between Johannesburg and Mauritius on Monday due to unfavourable weather conditions associated with tropical storm Calvinia.

The Mauritius Meteorological Services said that the storm continued to intensify and issued a cyclone warning with the possibility of wind gusts of up to 120km/h over the island nation in the Indian Ocean.

“We have decided to add additional flights on Tuesday in order to accommodate as many passengers as possible who are affected by the cancellation on Monday. SAA will operate two wide-bodied aircraft‚ an A330-200 [36 business and 186 economy class seats] and an A330-300 [46 business and 203 economy]‚” said airline spokesperson Tlali Tlali.

“We apologise to our customers for these cancellations‚ which were caused by circumstances beyond our control. The Mauritius Meteorology Services notified us that they have decided to close the airspace based on the severity of the weather conditions for airlines to operate.”

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Tlali said SAA would monitor weather conditions in Mauritius and advise customers accordingly.

The Mauritius Meteorological Services website said in an update posted just after 1pm that active cloud bands associated with Calvinia were influencing the weather over Mauritius with intermittent rain. Rainfall was expected to be moderate to heavy at times with thunderstorms and the possibility of localised flooding.

The cancelled flights are:

SA190/MK950 on December 30 2019 from Johannesburg to Mauritius
SA191/MK949 on December 30 2019 from Mauritius to Johannesburg
SAA planned to reinstate flights on Tuesday‚ December 31‚ and operate as follows:

Johannesburg to Mauritius:

SA190 from Johannesburg to Mauritius to operate as per normal schedule and will depart 9:45am (Johannesburg)
SA3192‚ an additional flight added from Johannesburg to Mauritius to depart at 8:40am (Johannesburg)
Mauritius to Johannesburg:

SA191 from Mauritius to Johannesburg to depart 4:40pm (Mauritius)
SA3193‚ an additional flight added from Mauritius to Johannesburg to depart at 3:35pm (Mauritius)

By: Kgaugelo Masweneng

Source: TMG Digital.

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