HONOLULU (KHON2) — Mokulele Airlines parent company, Southern Airways, will relocate three nine-seat planes to Hawaii and add a 28-seat Saab 340 aircraft to the flight schedule.
According to Southern Airways, March has been a challenging month for Hawaii flight operations due to weather and visibility issues.
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Recently, two Saab aircrafts were grounded. One for a five-year inspection and the other for repairing damage caused by a piece of ground service equipment, leaving both 28-seat aircrafts down for a week.
Southern Airways said the one damaged Saab is looking to be repaired and back in the air shortly. Southern Airways CEO, Stan Little, also mentioned other work being done with the aircrafts.
Little said, “We are in the process of refurbishing our entire Hawaii fleet with new paint to prevent corrosion caused by the salt air.”
With many aircrafts being worked on, three new nine-seat Tecnam Travellers will be used in Hawaii as a temporary reserve aircraft to back up other similar sized planes that are rotating for heavy inspections. The first nine-seat aircraft is set to arrive in April.
Southern’s ability to almost immediately deploy three Tecnams to use as reserve aircraft will ensure greater reliability.”Stan Little, chairman and CEO of Southern Airways
Also starting in April, Southern Airways announced they will be removing a daily flight from Kapalua, Hilo and Kona and adding the aircrafts with crew to Molokai and Lanai to improve services.
This summer a third 28-seat aircraft is set to service Molokai and Lanai helping the two already flying in and out in these locations.
The third plane will help with trips to and from both islands during peak times of the day and will be used in case one of the two already in serves should be unavailable.
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The new addition of the Saab with the three new Tecnam Travellers as reserve aircrafts cost Southern Airways 10 million dollars.