Kansai International Airport (KIX), serving Osaka and the neighboring region, partially reopened its main terminal on Friday, September 14. The south wing of the terminal resumed operations beginning at 06:00 (local time) on Friday with 122 flights, including 83 international flights, scheduled throughout the day. Up to 70 flights are being redirected to nearby Osaka International Airport, or Itami Airport, (ITM) and Kobe Airport (UKB). The operator, Kansai Airports, announced it plans to fully reopen the terminal next Friday, September 21, along with rail service. The main runway remains closed as repairs are ongoing on the causeway that links the airport to the mainland. Road traffic along the bridge remains limited to one lane reserved for shuttle buses. Delays and long taxi times are possible.
KIX was closed from damage sustained from Typhoon Jebi on September 4. Storm surge and rain resulted in the flooding of the main runway, the basement of Terminal 1, and several service buildings. The storm also pushed an empty oil tanker into the access causeway that connects the airport to the mainland, causing damage to the bridge and stranding thousands of passengers. The bridge remains closed to train and private traffic, though shuttle buses to train stations on the mainland are using undamaged lanes.
Typhoon Jebi made landfall east of Kobe, resulting in the deaths of 14 people and injuring more than 740 others across 29 prefectures. Nearly 5000 homes were damaged from the storm, which was the largest typhoon the country has seen since 1993.
Individuals traveling via KIX in the near-term are advised to monitor developments to the situation, verify the status of their flights, and allow for additional transit time to and from the airport.
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