Honiara, Solomon Islands – Solomon Airlines has announced it will continue to operate its services into and out of Bauerfield International Airport, Port Vila, as normal.
In a statement released by the airline, General Manager Operations & Commercial, Gus Kraus said Solomon Airlines had conducted an immediate review of the airport's runway and concluded conditions were safe from a flight operational perspective.
"Passengers and crew safety remain an absolute priority for Solomon Airlines and if there was ever any doubt, we would act accordingly," Mr Kraus said.
"Hence our decision to immediately carry out our own review of the runway which in part was done in consultation with our Airbus A320 Manager International Flight Operations and Flight Examiner when they flew through Port Vila to Nadi on Saturday afternoon and again by senior pilots returning on Sunday.
"Our conclusion is that the runway is safe and we will continue to maintain operations with our flagship Airbus A320 into and out of the airport on its normal weekly schedule.
"We are working very closely with our Melanesian aviation colleagues and codeshare partner Air Vanuatu in Port Vila and have also received information from the Director of Civil Aviation in Vila that gives us some comfort in our decision although we will continue to monitor the situation and act on any changed circumstances.
"If for any reason the situation changes, we will take appropriate action at that time.
"We urge the authorities in Port Vila to also take the necessary steps of upgrading the runway conditions to ensure all airlines resume operations for the benefit of the Vanuatu people and industry and its future tourism development."
Solomon Airlines currently operates the following services into and out of Bauerfield International Airport, Port Vila:
Flight number IE 702 HIR 1415 - VLI 1615
Flight number IE 702 VLI 1700 - NAN 1930
Flight number IE 703 NAN 0900 - VLI 0930
Flight number IE 700 VLI 1015 - HIR 1215
For further information visit www.flysolomons.com or telephone the following:
Solomon Airlines Australian Office - telephone toll free on 1300 894311 or + 61 3860 5883.
Solomon Islands Travel Centre Honiara – telephone + 677 20152.