NZ and Aus flights cancelled and diverted due to Fuʻamotu airport’s power outage

    Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand had to cancel flights on Tuesday due to the power outage at the Fuʻamotu International airport’s runway, the Minister for Public Enterprises said.

    The blackout hit at about 6.30pm causing the Australian flight to be diverted to Samoa while the Air New Zealand was diverted to Fiji.

    Hon Poasi Tei told Parliament the incident was caused by a faulty cable which was repaired this morning.

    A flight by a small aircraft from New Zealand was also cancelled after it was scheduled to return with a patient from Tonga for medical treatment.

    As Kaniva reported the airport electricity relied on power supplied by the Tonga Power Ltd and a back-up power supply provided by the Tonga Airport Ltd (TAL).

    The TAL backup power should automatically take over whenever there was a main power failure.

    However, yesterday’s problem had nothing to do with the power suppliers.

    In February passengers who were about to leave for New Zealand and Australia complained after a power failure at the airport had delayed their flights.

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