Posts Tagged ‘Aeroflot’

Record numbers of passengers pass through Dubai International

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

The world’s largest international airline, Emirates, helped Dubai International Airport celebrate yet another year of record passenger traffic. The airport recorded 47.2 million people passing through in 2010, an increase on 2009 figures of 15.3 per cent. The boost in numbers is also indicative of the hubs popularity with international carriers who are attracted to its open skies policy, its low rates and its tax-free status.

At present, 133 airlines are listed as using the airport from Russian flag-carrier Aeroflot through to Air Zimbabwe. However, it is the behemoth that is Emirates which really makes the difference. In 2010, the airline added eight brand new Airbus A380 superjumbos to its fleet, the largest airliner on the planet. It also boosted capacity by taking delivery of three of Boeing’s long-range 777-300ERs.

Emirates also added five new destinations to its schedule and is currently showing no indication that it will be slowing its expansion. In mid-2009, flydubai was launched and has also been aggressively adding routes to its itinerary. Through last year it added an average of one new destination ever three weeks.

According to Dubai Airports’ chief executive, Paul Griffiths, there are no reasons for Dubai not to continue to grow its operations through 2011. He predicts that passenger numbers will increase by a further 11 per cent to more than 52 million.

The airport is planning to implement measures to handle the increase in numbers such as improve its infrastructure on the ground as well as better handle the management of its airspace.

Russian airliner explodes before take off

Monday, January 3rd, 2011

A Russian airliner carrying eight crew members and 116 passengers has exploded killing three and injuring dozens more. The incident occurred as the Kogalymavia owned Tupolev-154 was taxiing ahead of take-off at Surgut airport in western Siberia. The jet was headed for Moscow.

The explosion occurred after a fire ignited in one of the Tu-154 engines. Pictures taken at the scene show flames and smoke poring from the wreckage. Most of the crew and passengers managed to make it to safety. However, according to emergency workers, 43 passengers suffered injuries, 10 seriously. Although some were treated for burns and broken bones, most were suffering from the effects of inhaling smoke and fumes.

An investigation into how the incident occurred is now underway. A criminal probe is also taking place to find out whether Kogalymavia was in breach of security rules. There have been a number of crashes involving the Tu-154 in recent years. It is an aging plane, having first entered service in the 1970s.

Flag carrier Aeroflot has removed all of its Tu-154s from service, but the aircraft remains popular with a variety of regional carriers. Because of its unacceptable engine-noise levels, the mid-range jet is no longer permitted to fly to many parts of Europe.

On board at the time the fire started was member of the Russian rock band Na-Na, Sergei Grigoriev. He described to news agency ITAR-TASS how the cabin filled with dense smoke causing passengers to panic. He said he saw people clambering over each other and added that he saw his own life flash before him.