Minister of State for Aviation debunks earth quake rumour at Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA)

The Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, has told newsmen that the vibration experienced at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos on Sunday was not in any way an earthquake as suspected by those at the Airport.

Sirika told newsmen in Lagos that the vibration was as a result of unlatched doors where the coolers which had just been put into use at the foremost airport were housed.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the minister flew in from Abuja over allegations that there were massive vibrations that had affected the structural integrity of the airport.

He described such reports as erroneous and misleading.

Sirika said :”Well, first and foremost, it is wrong and erroneous to say that the structure of the Murtala Muhammed Airport is failing and there was earthquake as reported by some sections of the media.

“It is not so .What happened is that there was vibration at the air handling room of the cooling system.

“This door is a huge metal door that needs to be locked properly; it was locked, but it wasn’t latched properly.”

According to the minister, that gave rise to the vibration because there were moving parts, motors, fans and other things that were activated to function and create the necessary cooling system.

“That door responded to the vibration, and because it wasn’t latched, it was vibrating and that vibration was directly under the counter of Royal Air Maroc, and they assumed the structure was vibrating to the point of collapse.

“Once our men were alerted, they went promptly, identified the problem which was the door, and latched the door, and since then, there has been quiet, so it’s not true,” he said.

The minister said that the engineering department was working on the chillers too and would soon make the airport more comfortable for users.

He also spoke on the issue of the power outage that was reported.

“Indeed there was power outage at the airport; however, we have dedicated generators to certain areas of the airport and those generators were working at the time we lost the power.

“The airfield lighting,, taxiways were all working perfectly and most parts of the operational aspects of the airport, including the checking-in counter, were working perfectly.

“The terminal building where passengers found themselves was affected, but the outage did not get to the critical safety operations of the airport, and even that, it took us a couple of minutes to identify the problem and we went for it.

“The generators that would power that unit had surges and destroyed part of the activation system of the generators and took time to restore but it has been restored now and since then everything has been working normally,” he said.

According to him, the government is working hard to provide other alternate sources that would be able to mitigate the impact of such surges in the future.