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An incident involving a Virgin Atlantic aircraft at the Hewanorra International Airport during the December 24, 2013 trough is under investigation.
According to regional media, the landing gear of a Virgin Atlantic Airbus A330-300 which flew in from Tobago was damaged when it touched down on a flooded runway at the Hewanorra Airport on Christmas Eve.
A report on Caribbean News Now states that the flight, VS-98, had received clearance to land but a nearby river burst its banks and suddenly flowed unto the runway. This caused a weather station to be washed away and mud to be deposited on the runway, according to the report. There were no injuries during the incident.
The Saint Lucia Air and Sea Port Authority (SLASPA), in a recent statement on the matter said that things are still being investigated and that “all parties including Virgin Atlantic, SLASPA and independent regulatory bodies are currently working on this current inquest”.
The aircraft, which is still grounded here, has been moved to parking position Number One at Hewanorra International Airport as this “allows for the safe parking and taxiing of incoming and outgoing flights”.
“SLASPA continues to work with Virgin Atlantic both locally and internationally to ensure that service into Saint Lucia is not interrupted. Virgin Atlantic continues to provide service into Saint Lucia and during the period from December 24, 2013 – January 5, 2014, has moved a total of 2,764 passengers,” SLASPA said in the release.
“SLASPA’s top priority remains the safety and security of all operations at the airport. Both of the Island’s two airports has maintained a long and strong record of safety and follows stringent international regulations and SLASPA remains committed to its mandate,” it added.