Singapore Airlines cuts flights to Tokyo's Haneda airport

Singapore's flag-carrier said Tuesday it will suspend half of its daily flights between the city-state and Tokyo's Haneda airport as demand weakened because of the nuclear crisis in Japan.

Singapore Airlines (SIA) said in its website it will halt two of its four flights between Changi Airport and Haneda from Sunday.

"Flights SQ635 and SQ636 which operate between Singapore and Haneda will be suspended from 27 March 2011," a post on the website read.

However, an SIA told AFP the airline would maintain its four flights between Singapore and the Japanese capital's Narita Airport.

The spokesman said the suspension of the Haneda flights was due to a slump in customers going to Japan after a massive 9.0 earthquake and subsequent tsunami hit the country's northeast.

The twin disasters triggered a crisis at a tsunami-hit nuclear power plant about 250 kilometres (155 miles) from Tokyo, where workers have been struggling to bring overheating reactors under control.

"We are seeing weakening demand in and out of Tokyo due to the situation in Japan," the spokesman said.

Kyodo News on Tuesday reported that smoke and steam were again rising from damaged reactors at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi plant.

White steam-like vapour was seen rising from the number two reactor and what looked like white hazy smoke from the number three reactor, Kyodo said, adding that efforts to spray water and restore electricity had temporarily stalled.

Abnormal levels of radiation were also detected in shipments of certain vegetables and milk from four prefectures near the plant, fuelling public anxiety about contamination from radiation.

plj/bh/mba/dan

 

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