Loganair describe aircraft fault as ‘slight’

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The latest in the long-running saga of delayed and cancelled flights by air service provider to the Western Isles Loganair occurred yesterday when the media reported that a ‘crack’ was found in a propeller of a Loganair plane before it was due to fly out of Stornoway Airport.

However a spokesman for the company today (Thursday) was keen to describe the fault as ‘slight damage’ that could have happened mid-flight, he said: “The pilot noticed there was slight damage to a propeller blade during the pre-flight inspection of the aircraft scheduled to operate the Stornoway to Glasgow service.

“A replacement aircraft was flown in to take the 24 passengers on to Glasgow and the aircraft is currently being repaired by our engineers.

“We would like to apologise to our passengers for the inconvenience and reassure them their safety and that of our crew is always the first priority, as shown by the fact the aircraft was removed from service when the fault was found.”

The company are keen to stress the measures being put in place to address maintenance issues, however will not be drawn on a time-frame for when these issues will be fully addressed to return the air-service to normal, they have said there will be a ‘gradual improvement’ and that they need time to make this happen.

This week the Gazette (out today) concentrates on the reaction of politicians following pilots union Balpa raising concerns about the maintenance and safety of the airline’s planes.

Highlands and Islands MSP David Stewart has urged cross-party support in regards to his letter to Transport and Islands Minister Derek Mackay asking for a ‘urgent meeting’ in regards to the issue.