Domestic flights bore the brunt of disruptions because of snow
at Christchurch International Airport this morning.
Chief Operations Officer, Andy Lester, says while a number of
flights have managed to get in and depart, some passengers travel
was disrupted. "While the airport is open, it is
essential passengers check with their airlines before beginning
their travel as they will be the ones to determine whether
conditions allow them to fly."
Some international flights have managed to get away during
breaks in the weather. One inbound international flight operated by
Singapore Airlines had to be diverted to Auckland. It has now
returned to Christchurch, touching down a short time ago.
Earlier this morning, the main runway and taxi-ways were covered
by up to 8mm of snow but Andy Lester says airport staff have
managed to now clear them completely of snow and slush.
"Today's snow has not been, at this stage, as disruptive for the
airport as we experienced last month but we are conscious more snow
is forecast and conditions can change rapidly which could mean
Christchurch International Airport has been preparing for this
event since the middle of last week when it was first notified of
the likelihood of snow. This has included bringing in additional
equipment and resources as well as making arrangements to ensure
staff could safely come into work.
"We have a responsibility to the travelling public to maintain
the operational integrity of the airport 24 hours a day seven days
a week, and our staff are integral in ensuring this can happen.
"That is why we made contingencies last Friday to have our own
staff and the Four Wheel Drive Club available to collect and return
personnel to their homes should it be too dangerous for them to
travel in their own vehicles.
"A number of airport and agency employees availed themselves of
this service this morning. We will ensure they are able to also
return safely to their homes at the end of their shifts."
For further information contact: Airport Communications Phone:
03 353 7807 or Mobile: 021 450 202.