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Airport reliability takes worry out of travel plans

November 27th, 2017 by Ron Dash

Airport reliability takes worry out of travel plans

There aren’t many certainties in life but here’s one you can pretty much count on: a flight out of Nanaimo Airport.

The airport posted a 99.6% weather reliability rating last year – nearly all planned flights took off or landed despite some severe weather conditions. That impressive performance was achieved with more than 550 scheduled flights using the airport each month.

The sterling weather reliability rating allows central Island travellers to rely on the airport as their year-round gateway to the world. Of course, Mother Nature sometimes has other plans. Extreme weather can impact flights at any airport, and seaplanes too. Other travel modes for Islanders are similarly at the mercy of weather. Last month, for example, BC Ferries cancelled several sailings due to high winds. Flights continued as scheduled during those times at Nanaimo Airport.

So what accounts for the airport’s near-perfect reliability rating?

Much of the credit goes to an Instrument Landing System (ILS) installed in 2010. The high-tech navigation aid helps pilots land and take off safely even with limited visibility. Before ILS was implemented, as many as 90 flights a year were cancelled due to weather.

Other infrastructure improvements made by the Nanaimo Airport Commission have also boosted flight reliability by extending the runway and additional lighting. (Approach lights are the most important for pilots when landing.)

Since airlines — not the airport — decide when to cancel flights, it’s always best to check with your air carrier for up-to-date information. Also visit NanaimoAirport,com for a  live flight status updates for arrivals and departures.

infographic_2017_Reliability Graph