We’re excited about this week’s airport news round up as it contains a little bit of everything: new technology, almost unbelievable stories, some drama and thrills. So, here are the headlines of the stories we’re going to cover:
- First airport given green light to have traffic controlled remotely
- Indian airline hits buffalo during take-off
- Air Canada’s emergency landing leaves 1 in hospital
- Extreme sports come to the airport
The first story sounds a bit boring at first, however, when you read into it, it’s actually very exciting and surely ground breaking, if not future defying for many smaller airports: The Wall Street Journal reported this week that a small airport in northern Sweden was given the green light on Monday to control its air traffic from afar, making it the first remotely operated airstrip in the world. According to the article developers of the technology, which has been tested for more than three years, hope it will revolutionize the air-traffic control business and allow airports to shrink costs by centralizing control services once geographical constraints are removed. The airport in question is Örnsköldsvik airport (OER), a regional airport, about 440 km north of Stockholm, Sweden. You can also find out more about this new technology directly from Sweden’s Civil Aviation Administration (LVW).
The BBC then presented us with a story that sounded pretty unbelievable: An Indian aircraft hit a stray buffalo during take-off, the headline read. Excuse us? Well, according to the story, the airline said in a statement that the Boeing 737-800 aircraft hit the buffalo on “take-off roll” at Surat airport (STV). The Delhi-bound SpiceJet plane, carrying 146 passengers and crew, was grounded on Thursday because of the damage sustained in the accident. SpiceJet said the buffalo, which was killed in the crash, was “essentially invisible against a black background”.
A different accident happened in Canada this week, when an Air Canada Bombardier Q400, carrying 71 passengers and four crew members, was forced to divert to Edmonton (YEG) after a tire blew on takeoff in Calgary (YYC) and high crosswinds there prevented an emergency landing. Unfortunately that emergency landing then was anything but smooth as reported by CBC: The propeller sliced through the fuselage spraying glass across the cabin and filling the air with the smell of burnt steel, plastic and asphalt. After that, the forward landing gear broke away. The horror could have been worse though as “only” three passengers were sent to hospital where one remains under observation.
Thankfully, we’ve got a much lighter story to finish off this week: What a delight it was to read this article and even more to watch the corresponding video. We’re talking about Mashable’s article where skaters from all over the world got to live out a fantasy and liven up Helsinki Airport (HEL) when they took it over in October for the Match Made in Hel 2014 invitational. The skaters did tricks off baggage claim carousels and brought half pipes to airplane hangars and runways. Seriously, you’ve got to see this:
That’s all for this week – safe travels.
[Title picture taken from LFV’s online video – some rights reserved]