Airport chiefs criticised for ‘third world’ service
Premium Article !
Your account has been frozen. For your available options click the below button.
Premium Article !
To read this article in full you must have registered and have a Premium Content Subscription with the n/a site.
Registered Article !
Published Date: 20 December 2010
By Chris Benfield
Thousands of travellers faced another day of long queues and grim conditions at UK airports yesterday as the snow and ice wreaked havoc.
Transport Minister Philip Hammond last night relaxed the rules on night flights in a bid to ease the passenger backlog at Heathrow, following airport operator BAA’s confirmation that its second runway will remain closed today. Only a third of scheduled flights at Heathrow are expected to operate today.
London mayor Boris Johnson said: “It can’t be beyond the wit of man, surely, to find the shovels, the diggers, the snow-ploughs or whatever it takes to have more than one runway going.”
Former Labour Transport Secretary Lord Adonis accused the airport operator of making Britain look like “a third world country in terms of its transport systems”.
He added: “BAA has big explaining to do about its failure to open Heathrow properly for a third day running.”
Last night Gatwick Airport grounded all outbound flights until 6am today because of snow.
The big freeze has not only affected those trying to leave the UK by air. Eurostar passengers also experienced major problems, some having to queue for more than seven hours to board a train at St Pancras.
The UK’s road and rail network has also been badly hit.
Mr Hammond told MPs in the Commons that disruption was “inevitable” given the severity of the weather conditions.
He said the transport system would “struggle to recover” in the days leading up to Christmas with more arctic weather expected.
Yorkshire is expected to endure more savage weather this week. It should remain dry today and tonight, but very low temperatures are predicted. Tomorrow and Thursday, north-easterly winds will bring snow back to much of the East Coast.
California Aviation Alliance: Airport News List E-mail
Sent by AviaEd@netscape.net – Lorena de Rodriguez on behalf of CAA subscribers. Add your comments to these stories realtime online at http://aviaed.wordpress.com/.
To subscribe or unsubscribe to the Airport News List, send an email, from the email account you wish to receive or discontinue CAA posts on, addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org and place only the following in the first line of the body of the message: Subscribe airport YourFirstName YourLastName YourJobTitle YourAirport/Company
Manage your CAA subscriptions with the user friendly Mail List Administration database. You’ll find it at: http://californiaaviation.org/cal/index.cfm
Contact email@example.com with problems with your subscription.