By Shannon Teoh
KUALA LUMPUR, June 8 — The new national air traffic control system has been defective since it was introduced on December 13 last year, putting the lives of millions of passengers at risk, PKR claimed today.
Vice president Nurul Izzah Anwar (picture) told The Malaysian Insider the new system supplied to the National Air Traffic Control Centre (NATCC) in Subang at a total cost of RM280 million “is so flawed, controllers revert to the old system of not using radar.”
“It is definitely dangerous if radar is not functioning properly because plane positions are wrong.
“It poses a considerable risk,” she said, although she added that there were mitigating measures that could be taken by controllers of Malaysia's airspace which serves hundreds of millions of passengers annually.
According to documents produced by the opposition party purported to be correspondence between the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and the supplier, the system was rife with errors, including “inconsistency in cleared flight level.”
However, one letter, dated December 21, 2011, also show that the contractor promised to fix defects in the radar system supplied to the NATCC by March this year.
The Lembah Pantai MP said she has no information on further action on the matter, and demanded the DCA and the Transport Ministry to explain the extent of problems and justify the contract awarded via direct negotiation.
“We need to know whether all the corrective measures have been done,” she said.
She added that the flaws also created added cost to the industry and “airlines will avoid our airspace as there is longer flying time, more fuel burned and delays at airports.”