DALLAS – Flights to/from Geneva Airport (GVA) were canceled after a fire broke out at a reception center for asylum seekers near the airport.
“Due to a fire at the edge of the runway, landings and take-offs have been suspended since 5:35 pm (1535 GMT),” the airport said on Twitter.
Images appeared to show indications of a blast at GVA, with black smoke shooting into the sky as aircraft landed at the airport, whose runway is located on the outskirts of the Swiss territory, close to the French border.
Airport spokesperson Ignace Jeannerat said the fire was ‘under control,’ but employees needed to “secure the area and remove the debris.” GVA later tweeted that a reopening of the runway, for take-offs initially, was envisaged around 7:00 pm (1700 GMT).
While flames or smoke subsided by 4.30 pm local time, firefighters continued to water down the building, which was encircled by scaffolding and tarps.
The tweet above says: “First report on traffic disruptions after the fire on the runway: major delays, 11 airline flights and three private flights diverted to other airports and at least 11 flights canceled.”
Some arrivals were rerouted to Lyon and Basel. At the time of this writing, there is no official report as to the cause of the fire.
After Zurich Airport (ZRH), GVA is Switzerland’s second busiest airport.
Featured image: Geneva Airport T1 main building. Photo: christophe95 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0