Flying High? Nope!

Posted by M ws On Monday, December 10, 2012 2 comments
Over the past two years, I have never ceased to be amazed at the 'wonderful' renovation works at the Penang International Airport. Last week, I took the following photos at the departure hall.

Photo taken in early December at Departure Hall, Penang International Airport

I noticed the cracks/patterns in the ceiling and asked the ground staff for more information. To my horror, they said 'dah biasa' and pointed out the following leakages at the ventilation holes.

                  Photo taken in early December at Departure Hall, Penang International Airport

Another staff member told me about the leaking in the men's restroom and was supposed to have sent me the images but somehow, I never received it. He also showed me his collection of photos which showed the flooding outside the arrival hall. Sadly, I received none of those photos he promised to send me.

Those who have frequented the airport would also be aware that the floor tiles are very slippery. It is especially dangerous at the baggage carousel as when jerking the luggage off the carousel, one might slip and hit one;s head on the floor or side of the carousel. Why the authorities approved the use of such tiles is a mystery to me. As I stood there waiting for my luggage to appear, a group of elderly Penangites who had just returned from a tour of Central and South Vietnam were complaining about the tiles to another member who obviously had connections to voice the complaints. They emphasized how she had to escalate this issue to higher levels.

I did a search for more pics/articles on the airport which can make it for some sort of world record for the length of time taken for the upgrading works and the bizarre occurrences of late.

Note the following:

1. This article from The Malaysian Insider says the first phase of the BLIA upgrading project was expected to be completed in January 2012.

2. This article from Malaysia Airports says Malaysia Airports seeks the public’s cooperation and understanding during the construction period of the Penang International Airport (PIA) major upgrade. The PIA will be featuring superior infrastructure and facilities when the development and expansion project is completed in June 2012. 

3. On Oct 15th this year, The Malaysian Insider reported HERE that parts of the plaster ceiling at the arrival hall of the Penang International Airport came crashing down early this morning, injuring an employee. 

4. On Oct 22nd this year, Business Times featured a report HERE which said: 
Leaky roofs and flooding at the Penang International Airport are anything but new to air travellers, who have had to endure endless discomfort and inconvenience since the RM250 million upgrade work began. 
MAHB has been on the receiving end of tirades from all parties, ranging from politicians to airlines, for not only running into "overtime" in completing the renovation job but also for the lack of attention to many details and settling for less than satisfactory standards for the job carried out so far. 
Dripping roofs and ceilings have been a common sight to those arriving and departing from the Penang airport in recent months. Plastic pails and buckets in certain spots at the airport's departure area have become part of the "landscape" whenever it rains.  
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, whose litany of complaints on the progress of the airport's facelift work has been endless, was spot-on last week when he described the continuous leaks at the airport as "shameful".
As the pressure mounts on MAHB to expedite the renovations on the airport, they should not compromise on the quality of work done by the appointed contractors and settle for sub-standard amenities at what is meant to be an international-standard airport. 
Of greater importance is to ensure that the safety of travellers and airport workers is not compromised.
5. Most interesting would be the comments from international travellers at THIS SITE. Every single commenter gave the Penang International Airport X for recommendation! Most shameful! Please visit THIS LINK to see the comments.

Finally, if you want some shocking news about airlines, *gulps*, please visit THIS LINK and read as much as you can, especially the November 22nd post. Be shocked beyond words.

Flying high? I think not!

2 comments to Flying High? Nope!

  1. says:

    patches Dear MWS - so very glad to read your apt article on the Penang Airport! It was two years ago that we were in Penang and the airport was in the state of renovation and we just came back from Penang over the week end AND the airport IS STILL BEING RENOVATED!! But alas, the planners do not look forward - and are still living in the third world environment, there are no hooks behind the doors for users to hang their bags but they have racks above the seats for them to heave their luggage on. Salute Malaysian developers! The surface is always wet and stained with dirty footmarks and the common Malaysian toilet stench!
    What more can be said?

  1. says:

    MWS Dear Patches

    Great to hear from you again! Am glad this post resonated with your experiences.

    Like you, I had a tough time with my luggage, backpack and handbag when at the restroom for the same reason you mentioned.

    The airport official I interviewed said there seems to be little spot checks so some can get away with inefficiency and who has to pay the price?


    Take care and thank you for sharing your experiences. Please keep in touch.

    Best wishes

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