Eagle County airport flight disruption numbers don’t inform the entire story

Eagle County airport flight disruption numbers don’t inform the entire story
Eagle County airport flight disruption numbers don’t inform the entire story
Whereas the Eagle County Regional Airport lately landed on a “most delayed” airports checklist, the story is a bit more sophisticated.
Scott Miller/Archive photograph

Numbers don’t at all times inform an entire story. That appears to be the case with a latest checklist of “worst” winter airports within the U.S.

In line with a Jan. 5 story at Forbes.com, the airports in Pitkin and Eagle counties are the nation’s worst for flight disruptions — both cancellations or delays of greater than an hour. Pitkin County led the best way with 34.8% disruptions for all flights. Eagle County was second, with a 22% disruption price.

The disruptions have been significantly acute over the Christmas vacation. Eagle County Supervisor Jeff Shroll famous that through the nationwide storm that disrupted a lot of the county’s air visitors, about 80 individuals couldn’t get out of Eagle County for his or her return journey. These individuals ended up spending the evening within the industrial air terminal.

“We rounded up blankets for them, and we have been doing the very best we might,” Shroll mentioned.

The identical storm introduced some prolonged Vail Move closures, Shroll added. That left the terminal’s distributors with out new meals provides for some time.

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Nonetheless, these passengers might have flown out if there was an airplane accessible and an open airport at their vacation spot.

Climate elsewhere accounts for a lot of delays and cancellations, Shroll mentioned.

When frigid temperatures hit the southern states, a variety of flights have been grounded as a result of crews couldn’t apply de-icing compound to the plane.

Locations together with Atlanta and Dallas have little, if any, de-icing tools, Shroll mentioned. That isn’t an issue right here, after all.

At one other level through the Christmas holidays, the county airport had greater than 300 baggage that didn’t make it in from their authentic locations.

However the planes on the bottom in Gypsum have been in a position to fly if the locations have been open.

However when planes can’t fly, individuals search for options, together with renting automobiles, Shroll mentioned.

Peter Dann is chairperson of the EGE Air Alliance, a bunch made up of personal and native authorities representatives. He’s additionally the chief growth and technique officer for East West Resorts, which manages rental properties in a number of resort areas.

Dann mentioned the newest flight disruptions didn’t appear to have an effect on the lodging enterprise. And, he added, a flight delay is a unique factor than a flight cancellation.

Outgoing flights ceaselessly should spend a while on the airport’s de-icing station, Dann famous.

“Mountain climate modifications so shortly, and you want to wait. So that you simply hang around,” Dann mentioned. If the majority of disrupted flights are simply delays, “I’m not shocked,” he added.

One resolution to delays or cancellations is extra flights, Dann mentioned, including that’s what the alliance and airport officers are engaged on. Extra nonstop flights will be useful, in addition to extra United Airways flights to and from Denver.

“We might help reduce delays with extra flights to Denver,” Dann mentioned. “Now we are likely to get slightly (backed up)… with no flight till tomorrow.”

Whereas the runway hardly ever closes on the native airport, there’ll at all times be situations to deal with.

“We are able to’t change the climate, or transfer that mountain,” Dann mentioned.