India, Dec 21 (NIA) – A court in India has ruled that airlines will be fined Rs.50,000 (736 US dollars) if their planes release human waste from toilets while being in the air.
The ruling was made after a a retired Indian army officer, claimed that the terrace of his house in south New Delhi was being repeatedly spattered with excreta falling from aeroplanes.
The court further asked the aviation regulator to make sure that aircrafts do not release human waste from air while landing or anywhere near the airports.
“The Directorate General of Civil Aviation shall also issue directions that aircraft on landing shall be subjected to surprise inspection to see that human waste tanks are not empty,” the bench said.
“If any aircraft is found to be violating such circular or (their) tanks are found empty on landing, they shall be subjected to environment compensation of Rs 50,000 per default,” the bench added.
Plane toilets store human waste in special tanks.
According to the Hindustan Times, the petitioner had sought creation of a 24-hour helpline for immediate reporting of such incidents and a monitoring mechanism to check that no aircraft drops “human soil or excreta” while landing.
The Aviation Ministry had opposed the argument and said plane toilets stored the waste in special tanks which are normally disposed of by ground crews once the plane lands.
However, aviation officials acknowledge that lavatory leaks can occur in the air at times.