No cracks on KLIA2 runway, says agency

SEPANG, Malaysia - The Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) has dismissed claims of cracks on the apron, taxiway and the new runway 3 at the highly-anticipated Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA2). DCA director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the depressions on the taxiway and apron were caused by soil settlement.

He added the event was expected and did not pose any safety concern.

"The depression is to be expected according to the engineers. We have spoken to MAHB (Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd) and they will make the necessary repairs before the opening," he said here yesterday.

The airport apron is the area where aircraft are parked (it is also called as the gateway), while taxiway is a path connecting the runways with the terminals, ramps, hangars and other facilities.

Runway, on the other hand, is a road-like surface where aircraft land or take-off.

An online portal reported on Wednesday that the cracks found on KLIA2's apron could further delay the opening.

The airport's opening was delayed several times since Sept 2011. The latest was when the contractors of the main terminal building failed to meet the Jan 31 deadline to hand over the building to MAHB.

The building had failed the fire and safety standards inspection and did not get the Certificate of Completion and Compliance.

Azharuddin said MAHB and its contractors would wait for a few more weeks to rectify the depression by putting an overlay to smoothen the apron and taxiway's surfaces.

"They are already doing it part by part on the apron...The rectification work will be completed a month before the opening of KLIA2," he said.

Azharuddin said another test would be carried out on the runway before the opening.

"DCA has also done the testing simulation using a 100-tonne ground vehicle to test the strength of the apron, taxiway and runway 3 recently.

"That is the standard procedure practiced around the world. The testing showed it met our requirements.

"Even the big Airbus A380 can land and take off from the new runway," he said.