Buffalo-Lancaster Airport has plans to expand. It will, among other things, lengthen its runway to allow the landing of corporate jets. The total cost of the improvements will run around $1.6 million, the majority of which, will be paid by the federal government.
“We are going to be both a more safe airport and an airport that can
service more types of small aircraft traffic than we can now,” said
Eric Wobschall, airport manager.
Airport is less than 6 nautical miles from Buffalo Niagara
International Airport, he said, it is a designated as a “reliever
airport” that can ease air congestion by siphoning away small-plane
Oh yes, a reliever airport is exactly what we need. I mean, I just hate flying into Buffalo after a long trip. It's late at night, you want to get home and the pilot comes over the P.A. and tells you that there's heavy traffic. And there you are -- stuck in the air for, oh I don't know, two minutes while you wait for the other plane to land.
Soon we'll probably be spending many millions more to improve Niagara Falls Airport. Why, we'll be so flush with reliever airports, we'll hardly know what to do. I may have to relieve myself just thinking about it. I'm pretty sure it will lead to job-creation, too. Doesn't everything around here?
Even as the Soviet Union was collapsing, its engineers had developed a new type of plane, the ekranoplan. It would transport troops, tanks or freight underneath enemy radar. The ekranoplan "flew" at 10 to 20 feet above the water. It could also quite successfully fly across land, but pesky buildings and hills made that a risky venture. Old and fascinating rare video footage here.
With "the cheapest fare €10 ($12)", O'Leary expects the services, to secondary airports such as Baltimore, Providence in Rhode Island and New York Long Island Islip Macarthur "to be full". He expects sales of food, drink, duty-free goods and in-flight entertainment to be a major revenue earner.
However, the new airline will have a "premium class" pitched against "the best in the business" such as Virgin Atlantic.
O'Leary says he has already had speculative approaches from US airports and is confident the venture will succeed despite the failure of several transatlantic low-fare airlines over the years.
"By mid 2009, we will be carrying 70 million passengers at 23 bases across Europe," he says. "It will be relatively straightforward for us to do a deal for 40 to 50 long-haul aircraft and connect these bases transatlantically. There would be no one to touch us."
If they want to pitch Niagara Falls airport as an international jetport -- this would seem to be a good opportunity.
A Honolulu-bound plane made an emergency landing at San Francisco
International on Tuesday due to an unruly passenger itching for a
Delta Airlines flight 511, a nine-plus
hour flight headed to Hawaii from Cincinnati, was already over the
Pacific Ocean when a passenger was reportedly trying to smoke inside
the airplane, according to company spokeswoman Chris Kelly. The captain
elected to make an emergency landing.
The woman had an anxiety
attack while the plane was in the air, locked herself in the bathroom,
attempted to smoke a cigarette and become unruly, according to airport
and airline officials. It is illegal to smoke on an airplane.
Yeah, I know, it's illegal to smoke on an airplane and the woman did become "unruly." Not violent if we're to believe the story, mind you, but unruly. So why didn't they just handcuff her on the cabin floor until they got to Hawaii?
Is smoking now so dangerous that 200 passengers had to have their plans interrupted by an emergency landing in another city, the airline suffer thousands of dollars of delays and the police called out to meet the plane? One might hope there's more to the story. Like, maybe she dropped her pants and urinated in the aisle while she puffed away. I tell you, the friendly skies just aren't what they used to be.
[UPDATE:] Do newer airplanes still have ashtrays at the seats and "No Smoking" signs at the front of the cabin? Just wondering.
It's not a particularly beautiful plane -- think Concorde, 747, 707, 727, 787, Constellation, etc.. But it is big, so damned big that the fact it gets off the ground (and returns to it in one piece) is worth noting. It will be interesting to see if Europe's big gamble pays off against Boeing's 787. My suspicion is that the A380 will go the way of the Concorde without the romance.
The nation's airlines are obviously run by incompetent, nincompoops. Just one month after the JetBlue debacle at JFK, yet another storm there has caught the airlines flat-footed and hundreds more passengers spent the night on tarmac-bound airplanes.
The exact number of planes stuck on the tarmac was unclear, but irate
passengers reported that the problems seemed to affect several
airlines, and may have been linked to shortages of deicing fluid at the
Rahul Chandran said he was trapped aboard a Cathay Pacific Airways jet
from midnight until nearly 9:30 a.m. Saturday, when the flight to
Vancouver was finally canceled.
Throughout the night, the pilot repeatedly described problems with
deicing equipment, including a lack of fluid, that kept the plane
waiting endlessly to have its wings sprayed. When the airline finally
gave up and tried to return the plane to its terminal, it took at least
another hour to arrange a gate, he said.
"You can't keep your passengers on the plane for 9 1/2 hours," said
Chandran, 30, of New York City. "They kept saying 'half an hour more,
45 minutes more.' But by the time it got to hour six, we were pretty
much accepting that we weren't going to go ... At least in the
terminal, you can get up and walk around."
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates the
metropolitan area's airports, said airlines - not the airport - are
responsible for supplying and maintaining terminal deicing equipment.
I really, truly, honestly and sincerely do not want to see Congress impose some ridiculous "fliers' bill of rights" on the industry, but the idiot airlines are begging for it. Of all the maltreatment passengers are subject to when flying nowadays, being trapped on a plane for hours has to be the worst.
I once spent a measly 2 1/2 hours stuck in a 747 at Heathrow while a malfunctioning part was brought in. It was a summer afternoon and the plane's air conditioning wasn't running. It got nasty in that cabin let me tell you. I'm not terribly claustrophobic, but after a couple hours sitting motionless in an 85 degree cabin with several hundred gradually less and less fragrant fellow-travelers (no, they weren't communists,) I was beginning to feel like an extra in Das Boot. I can't imagine nine hours.
I don't understand all the logistics and economics of the airline industry, but I do know that you just cannot continue to treat passengers like cattle and expect something good to come out of it. Congress will now pounce, airlines will raise their prices to accommodate the new regulations and overall service will probably get even worse (such are the unintended consequences of well-meaning regulation.) The airlines could have avoided it and maybe still could -- but if they haven't yet they probably won't.
Here's some late-breaking news that might prove beneficial to Buffalo. The US and the EU have reached a tentative agreement on the so-called "open skies" agreement that regulates air travel between the two. The key breakthroughs are the opening up of precious London Heathrow slots to more American carriers and the new ability of European airlines to fly to any US city from any European city.
This could help Buffalo attract a few international flights and might -- and I stress "might" -- make the case for renovating the Niagara Falls airport a bit stronger. It's certainly true that Toronto's Pearson International is very crowded and thus the agreement increases the odds that Niagara Falls could attract regularly-scheduled international flights instead of hoping simply for a charter here and a start-up airline there.
By this agreement, the Niagara Falls Airport has suddenly become a more valuable resource. I just thought the NFTA would like to know that I'm giving them a tentative green light to explore the matter further; and I suspect the Buffalo News will follow suit -- in a couple days when they've heard about it.