The Grenada Airports Authority (GAA) has cited shipping delays for fire-fighting aggregates as the reason for its temporary change in status that affects the arrival of larger aircraft.
Despite its efforts to plan ahead for the resumption of international flights this month, the GAA is facing factors outside of its control. Having checked its inventory, the GAA placed an order for additional fire-fighting aggregates (foam/dry chemicals) on 27 August 2020 through its service provider. The GAA was advised of a delivery time of 5 weeks which by calculation, was estimated to be the first week of October.
However, on 7 October 2020 the supplier advised the GAA that due to logistical problems, the shipment of the dry chemicals and foam was booked for departure on Thursday, 15 October 2020. The shipment is therefore expected to arrive in Grenada 7 days later, on 22 October 2020.
As a result of this, the current category status for Crash Fire Rescue capabilities will be affected and will impact airline operators with larger aircraft which fly into Grenada, including, Virgin Atlantic and British Airways
As a responsible aviation entity that focuses on safety and security, and in accordance with the standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the GAA immediately advised airline operators of this issue.
The GAA has maintained constant communication with the airline operators and supplier on this matter as it awaits the shipping and arrival of the fire-fighting aggregates.
General Manager of the GAA, Wendy Francette-Williams gave assurances Tuesday that, “The GAA values airline safety and security as our first priority and we work in compliance with industry standards at all times. The timing of this is unfortunate as Grenada is just resuming international commercial flights after several months. We regret the inconveniences that may be caused to the travelling public, but safety and security remain our foremost guiding principles, therefore the decision taken is the correct one. We look forward to resuming the facilitation of Category E aircraft like those operated by British Airways and Virgin Atlantic in the not too distant future.”