Hamburg Airport had over 1 million passengers in January 2017 – an increase of 13.2 per cent over January 2016 – due to the altered school holidays, according to a monthly report published on Thursday (February 16th). This year, school holidays ended on January 9th unlike 2016 when school recommenced a week earlier. Thus the first week of 2017 saw growth of 29.2 per cent in passenger figures at Hamburg Airport. “The north German winter is causing mobility. During the cold months of the year, people are more attracted to the south,” said Janet Niemeyer, spokesperson at Hamburg Airport.
Hard winter hits delays
Winter weather had an adverse effect on flights across Europe and at Hamburg Airport. The airport had 51 take-offs and landings between 11 pm and midnight in January 2017. A fifth of delays were caused by the weather and black ice in the first half of January while the weather returned to normal in the second half of the month. On 13 days in that period, no aircraft took off or landed after 11 pm.
An analysis of the regulation on delays after 11 pm showed that around one-fourth of delays in January were caused mainly by two connections. Hamburg Airport, the airlines and authorities are now examining ways of making the connections more reliable.
Airlines have been using the so-called flat take-off (Flachstartverfahren) to save fuel and reduced CO2 emissions since 2012. However, during a meeting of the German Aircraft Noise Protection Commission, it emerged that residents in the area find these take-offs even noisier. Hamburg Airport has called for a suspension of flat starts, according to a press release.
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