Over 224,000 passengers are expected to travel through Dublin Airport during the upcoming October Bank Holiday weekend.
In a statement published on its website, Dublin Airport said, "More than 224,000 passengers are expected to travel through Dublin Airport this October Bank Holiday weekend, a 42% decrease compared with the same period, 2019.
"Over 1,587 flights will arrive and depart during the October Bank Holiday, making it the busiest Bank Holiday weekend of the year so far.
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"'We're expecting an average of more than 56,000 passengers per day over the four days between Friday, October 22 and Monday, October 25, 2021,' said daa Group Head of Communications Kevin Cullinane.
"'The Bank Holiday Friday will be the busiest day of the Bank Holiday weekend, with 61,000 passengers and 428 aircraft arriving and departing in a single day,' he added.
"This weekend is set to the busiest of the year so far, so to ensure a smoother journey we would strongly advise passengers to prepare for security in advance and go directly to the security screening area once they have checked-in.
"Passengers are advised to check which terminal their flight is departing from BEFORE leaving home…Passengers should plan to arrive in the terminal building at 2 hours before their flight departure time to short-haul destinations and 3 hours in advance for long-haul flights irrespective of whether they are checking in online or at the airport.
"Please remember that EU security regulations state that liquids over 100mls cannot be brought through the security screening area. Liquids under 100mls are permitted and should be placed in a transparent, re-sealable bag measuring not more than 20cm x 20cm. Exemptions are in place for medicines and for baby food.
"If you are travelling with children, please use the family lanes provided at the security screening area.
"If a member of your travelling group has Autism (ASD), Dublin Airport has a useful guide to help prepare you and them for their journey through the airport. Click here to find out more.
"Download the Dublin Airport app using our free WiFi service for useful information such as flight arriving/departing times, time to get through security screening areas in T1 and T2, shopping and parking information and much more.
"Dublin Airport will have Customer Care teams on duty across both terminals this Bank Holiday Weekend to help passengers with their journey through the airport."
World's Largest Aircraft Lands At Shannon Airport
In other Irish airport news, the world's largest aircraft has landed at Shannon Airport.
In a statement published on its website, Shannon Airport said, "The world's largest aircraft, the Antonov AN-225 touched down at Shannon Airport this afternoon from China carrying a cargo consignment for distribution in the Irish retail sector.
"With the longest runway in Ireland at 3,199m, Shannon Airport is the only airport in Ireland capable of accommodating the Antonov AN-225.
"The giant plane has landed at Shannon five times in the recent past, the last time was on the 10th June 2020 when it carried the single largest consignment of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to be flown into Ireland on a single flight. At that time the AN-225 took 20 men, on shift rotation, 15 hours to hand load 6,249 boxes weighing 18 kgs each.
"Speaking about the Antonov 225, Niall Maloney, Shannon Airport Operations & Commercial Director, said, "With a wingspan wider than the Croke Park pitch and, from nose to tail, over one and a half times the length of an Olympic swimming pool, the Antonov 225 stands alone as the largest plane ever made. It is wonderful to see the plane flying in commercial cargo, a further sign of a recovery in our economy.
"'We love having the Antonov here. It’s an incredible aircraft and when you see it on the taxiway here, it dwarfs anything else on the airfield. When you take its enormous size into perspective, it's almost unbelievable that it can get up into the skies, let alone be as graceful when it's up there. The plane also attracts significant interest with aviation enthusiasts from around the country who travel here in large numbers to view this unique aircraft,' he said.
"The six-storey-high, Ukrainian-built Antonov AN-225 is the only one of its kind. It has a wingspan of 88 metres, 32 wheels and is capable of carrying 640,000 tonnes on take-off. Known as the 'Mriya' the Russian word for dream.
The Antonov is due to depart Shannon at 9.00am on Wednesday 20th October.
"Some facts on the Antonov (Mriya) AN-225:
- "The Antonov AN-225 is the biggest commercial cargo aircraft in the world.
- "It's the longest-bodied, longest-winged and heaviest operational plane in the world. Its cargo compartment is 43 m by 6.4 m by 4.4 m - big enough to hold 50 cars. And there is only one operational Antonov An-225 in the world!
- "Manufactured in 1988 for the Russian Space Programme
- "Its first flight was on December 21st, 1988, and the jet will turn 33 just before Christmas ‘21
- "It stands over six stories high
- "It comprises 7 million lbs of metal
- "It has six engines and 32 tyres
- "It broke 109 world records within months of its first flight
- "It has six Turbofan Engines
- "Maximum take-off weight 640,000 kgs
- "Max lift Load: 250,000 kgs
- "Capacity: 1,200 cubic metres
- "Wingspan: 88 metres (The width of Croke Park is also 88 metres)
- "Length: 84 metres
- "Weight: 640 tonnes (same weight as nine Boeing 737 aircraft)."
Shannon Airport Holds Major Emergency Crash Exercise
In a separate statement published on its website, Shannon Airport stated, "Shannon Airport has today conducted a crash-exercise to test the response of the airport together with the support of the primary emergency agencies and other key stakeholders who would be called on in the event of a major aircraft accident at the airport.
"Participating agencies include Shannon Airport, Clare County Council Fire Service, An Garda Síochána Clare Division, the Health Service Executive, the Irish Coast Guard, the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) and Shannon Foynes Port Authority.
"Commenting on the crash-exercise, Niall Maloney, Shannon Airport Operations & Commercial Director, said, 'Crash-exercises are conducted every two years at Shannon Airport as a condition of our aerodrome certification and we use the opportunity then in conjunction with the other emergency services to test the regional major emergency plan and site-specific arrangements for the airport.
"'It was also an opportunity to test our airport’s state-of-the-art High Reach Extendable Turret (HRET) fire tenders. Using cutting edge technology and equipped with thermal imaging cameras, these HRET's allow firefighters identify the hottest part of the aircraft, vital knowledge that is needed to suppress and extinguish aviation fires as quickly and efficiently as possible.
"'The safety of our passengers, customer airlines and staff is paramount to us and today's exercise allows us to test our readiness for a real-life situation should it ever occur. It is about ensuring that, if the worst-case scenario happens, we and our colleagues in the other attending emergency services are adequately prepared to respond.'
"The two- hour exercise, code-named 'Exercise Juliet', was based on a fictitious incident involving a Boeing 767-300 aircraft with 100 passengers and 10 crew on board declaring a full emergency and diverting to Shannon. The simulation also involved the participants being told that the aircraft might have to ditch into the Shannon Estuary.
"'In all in excess of 50 personnel across all agencies were involved in the exercise on the day and we would like to thank them all for this assistance,' said Niall Maloney."
© 2021 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.