AIR-TRAFFIC IN EUROPE INCREASING BUT HIT BY HARSH WEATHER

James Morris - Mar 19, 2018
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Spain, Turkey, and Poland are the countries that contributed the most to the air-traffic in Europe in February, according to data released by EuroControl, the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation.

The air-traffic management in Europe registered substantial growth in February, although this increase was slightly below expectations, mostly as a result of the harsh weather conditions recorded in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Eastern Europe, which caused multiple flight cancellations.

Despite the unfavorable conditions, the average air-traffic in Europe in February increased by 3.6%, the highest number registered for that month in the last five years.

Seven states each added more than 50 daily flights to the airport network, with Spain, Turkey and Poland as the main contributors. Spain had the highest contribution, adding more than 157 flights per day, followed by Turkey with 149 extra daily flights thanks to its substantial internal growth, and the increase in capital flow rate from Eastern Europe.

In terms of airline companies, the ones that added the highest amount of flights were Turkish Airlines (+145 flights), easyJet (+99 flights), Lufthansa (+87 flights), Wizz Air (+75 flights), and Ryanair (+62 flights).

The growth in airport traffic had a positive impact in most of the largest European airports. In the case of Spain, Barajas registered an average of 519 air-traffic movements in February, which represents an increase of 5.7%, 381 were registered for Barcelona (+5.9%), and lastly Gran Canaria, with 183 air-traffic movements for the second month of the year, with a growth of 12%.

The total amount of delays in Air Traffic Flow Management (ATFM) increased by a 0.8% in February compared to the same month of the previous year. This way, en-route delays increased by 0.7% due to personnel issues, while delays in airports actually decreased by 15.5%.

According to Eurocontrol, the weather conditions in airports (39.4%), problems with air-traffic personnel (15.7%) and airport capacity (15.6%) were the main causes of delays registered by the management of air-traffic in Europe, in the month of February.

Eurocontrol points out in its report that the weather had a substantial impact on the second month of the year at the London-Heathrow, Barcelona, Istanbul, Paris Orly, Stockholm, and Zurich airports. Especially on February 26, when the average delay per flight exceeded 1.5 minutes.

The average en-route AFTM delay per flight was 0.32 minutes, a number that was above the monthly average which is 0.18 minutes per flight.

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