Diversion Airports

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14 years 5 months

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Could somebody clear up a matter about Diversion Airports. Does Airlines in the UK have selected Airports to Use when needing to Divert.
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Profile picture for user Jon Taylor

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14 years 1 month

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well about 30 minutes a Jet2 737 got diverted to Manchester (i think) from Barcerlona whilst going to Leeds Bradford (fog) thats all i no the Manchester Fog has gone and is now in Leeds i think
Profile picture for user Mark L

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Yes every flightplan has to have at least one "alternate" airport included in it which is used in the event the scheduled airport is unable to be used.
Profile picture for user Skymonster

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Airlines select diversion airport (planned on flightplan as already mentioned) based on a number of criteria, including: * Distance (and thus fuel required) from planned destination - can be an important consideration when destination is close to fuel limits for a/c * Locally based staff / base at diversion airport - can help with ground handling, line maintenance and arranging replacement crews (this is why yesterday some LPL EZY's went to EMA, for example) * Diversion contracts/deals with specific airports * Ability to handle aircraft and pax - e.g. no point in diverting a full 747-400 to somewhere like Norwich, which might not even have steps tall enough to reach the pax doors * Operational considerations on the day (e.g. which diversion airports are likely to be open and not also fogged in, capacity at diversion airports both in terminal, aircraft parking and handling, sometimes even coaching for pax - EMA was starting to turn away diversions last night, etc due ramp space limitations) Andy

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Cause I'm so kind I'll take a pic of an alternate print off that was given to me, to give you an idea of what one looks like. Sorry about the quality, but I have just taken it and my room is dark! :p Flex 35
Attachment Size
wxprintout.jpg 124.23 KB
Profile picture for user wysiwyg

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We have 2 different types of alternate for each destination: If the destination weather is reasonable we will use a 'fair weather' alternate such as for Hong Kong we would use Macau. This would be close by and with adequate facilities to get the aircraft refuelled and onto it's destination as the only reason we would have diverted would have been due to something like a closed airport. The closeness of the airport would enable a much smaller amount of 'alternate fuel' to be carried in light of the fact that this is dead weight that we don't expect to have to use. If the destination weather is poor we would then use what we would call a 'commercial alternate'. This would need to be some distance away so that it isn't affected by the local weather causing the problems at the destination. Because of this distance our 'alternate fuel' would now be much greater however that is acceptable as there is a greater chance of having to use it. A typical commercial alternate for Hong Kong might be Taipei in Taiwan.
Profile picture for user lbaspotter

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Hi
well about 30 minutes a Jet2 737 got diverted to Manchester (i think) from Barcerlona whilst going to Leeds Bradford (fog) thats all i no the Manchester Fog has gone and is now in Leeds i think
The Channex 232 from Barcelona did come back to Leeds last Night. Landed LBA about 20:50 after a short stay at MAN.
Profile picture for user cheesebag

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So if there is the strikes go ahead at BHX where will the traffic go?????
Profile picture for user murph

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East Midlands? Manchester? Coventry strictly speaking could possibly handle a couple of aeroplanes over the TFly 737's.
Profile picture for user Skymonster

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So if there is the strikes go ahead at BHX where will the traffic go?????
Depends on airline policy... For example, Emirates and PIA are likely to go to MAN or LHR (if they can get a slot) because they have staff / handling contracts there, BA often use MAN as an alternative to BHX for the same reason, but Ryanair will probably go to EMA. Past couple of days indicates FlyBe isn't averse to using EMA, but further back they've used CVT if its available. Scandi used to use EMA, but a while ago a major f**k up caused them to prefer MAN. And so it goes on with each airline having their own plan... Andy
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Ok then, so who can explain CO's SNN flight diverting to EDI today then? :confused:
Profile picture for user Future Pilot

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Regarding BHX diversions adding to what Andy already said.... The harder one to guess are Air Slovakia, Uzbekistan & Turkmenistan??? Air India? LHR is likley but if they can't get a slot?
Profile picture for user Skymonster

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Ok then, so who can explain CO's SNN flight diverting to EDI today then? :confused:
I am not familiar with CO's UK diversion policy but it will be a combination of: * Where is forecast to be above limits * Crew base to allow the return flight to operate * Ground base to allow the flight to be handled relatively easily * Airborne en-route and holding fuel requirements * Operational slot availability * etc, etc as I said above It could be anything including [for example] DUB might be marginal or below limits, MAN might not have terminal/gate/ground handling capacity, GLA has no 757 qualified crews available, no operational slots available at LGW, the only crews at BHX were needed for their own flights, etc, etc, etc. Bottom line, airline dispatchers will select the most convenient nominated diversion based on a variety of considerations both operational and commercial. Even then, if the planned alternates are not viable on the day, the operating crew will make a definitive decision as the flight progresses. Andy
Profile picture for user lbaspotter

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Hi The Uzbekistan Boieing 767 from BHX diverted to LBA once if memory serves me right.
Profile picture for user RIPConcorde

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I am not familiar with CO's UK diversion policy but it will be a combination of: * Where is forecast to be above limits * Crew base to allow the return flight to operate * Ground base to allow the flight to be handled relatively easily * Airborne en-route and holding fuel requirements * Operational slot availability * etc, etc as I said above It could be anything including [for example] DUB might be marginal or below limits, MAN might not have terminal/gate/ground handling capacity, GLA has no 757 qualified crews available, no operational slots available at LGW, the only crews at BHX were needed for their own flights, etc, etc, etc. Bottom line, airline dispatchers will select the most convenient nominated diversion based on a variety of considerations both operational and commercial. Even then, if the planned alternates are not viable on the day, the operating crew will make a definitive decision as the flight progresses. Andy
Ok thanks for that, it just seems strange that EDI was first suitable alternative that they used. I think EDI's own flight had left quite a while before the SNN flight arrived.
Profile picture for user EGNM

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Hi The Uzbekistan Boieing 767 from BHX diverted to LBA once if memory serves me right.
Yes correct, one period between Xmas and NY when BHX was Snow Closed. As for diversions within our company we have a certain amount of liason with the customer/charterer of the aircraft. For example a mail flight which may divert from LPL requires a Royal Mail station to land at so they can start to get the mail transferred by road. They issue a couple of preferance diverts, however such as the other day, if everywhere is blanket fogged and the aircraft is in the air, it becomes more of a flight safety issue than a customer preferance and we get the aircraft down at the nearest suitable aerodrome. The main infact produce a listing of there 2 primary preferred diversions. Most diversion alternates are planned by the Ops department of the aircraft concerned, and if we are out of reach of the aircraft by radio we try to issue instructions via the handling agents company frequency, or via ATC. As mentioned above, if we can we try to put aircraft/ crews into places we have contacts, details etc set up with, our own opeaing bases where we have based crews to recover the aircraft as soon as we can, however there does become a point where we issue to crews just to put down where they can safely if the turn commences on a fair flight. Lots can happen weatherwise is a period of a few hours from when they take off! Air Traffic do of course also have a major say. If the airfield is clogging up with diverts, they must try and keep space for their own normal scheduled operating aircraft. If they cannot accept we must look elsewhere.

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MAN might not have terminal/gate/ground handling capacity
Might be something to do with poor viz - when I left for work, it was 175m with sky obscured and RVRs around the 400m mark and ATC were giving aircraft expected approach times some 20 to 25 minutes after they made initial contact with approach. CO has sent the BRS 757 to MAN on one occasion within the last couple of weeks. David
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Just to be the pedant I am, not every flight plan has to have a diversion on it. If it is considered a remote destination what is termed "island holding" fuel may be carried which is normally equivalent to 2 hours flying time. Perth, Australia is often deemed a remote destination as is Antananarivo, Madagascar when flying anything bigger than a DC8.