Hewanorra International Airport
|Hewanorra International Airport|
|IATA: UVF – ICAO: TLPL|
|Operator||Saint Lucia Air and Seaports Authority|
|Location||Vieux Fort Quarter, Saint Lucia|
|Elevation AMSL||14 ft / 4 m|
Hewanorra International Airport (IATA: UVF, ICAO: TLPL), near Vieux Fort Quarter, Saint Lucia, in the Caribbean, is the larger of the country's two airports the smaller being George F. L. Charles Airport, and is managed by the Saint Lucia Air and Seaports Authority (SLASPA).
The airport is a Fire Category 9 airport that handles 500,000 passengers a year and has the capability to handle the Boeing 747, Airbus A330, Airbus A340, Boeing 777 and other similar long range intercontinental aircraft. Aircraft maintenance there is carried out by Caribbean Dispatch Services. George F. L. Charles Airport, formerly known as Vigie Airport, is located in Castries and handles inter-Caribbean scheduled passenger flights which are currently operated with turboprop and prop aircraft from this smaller airfield.
Hewanorra International Airport was originally named Beane Army Airfield and was used as a military airfield by the United States Army Air Forces Sixth Air Force and used in World War II. Beane Field was activated in early 1941 with a mission to defend Saint Lucia against an enemy attack.
The former USAF base was then refurbished and converted into a commercial airport. There is a disused northeast/southwest runway north of the main east-west runway that was part of the military airfield. It is in poor condition, along with a few dispersals.
As the amount of air traffic handled at Hewanorra International Airport is steadily increasing every year, St.Lucia Air and Sea Ports Authority has requested and received a master plan for the redevelopment and redesign of HIA. There has been much controversy surrounding the project as some say, at an estimated cost of US $160 million, it could set back the country's economy. Many have argued and said that expanding the airport will expand the country's economic outlook. the new terminal design includes: construction of a new terminal building, installation of jet bridges, a new modern control tower, increase in aircraft apron parking positions from five to eight in phase 1 of the project and then to twelve in phase 2; development of a Fixed Base Operation (FBO); redevelopment and relocation of a new air cargo facility; and construction of a new car park and road infrastructure network. As the projections indicate, passenger throughput is expected to increase by approx. 750,000 passengers. The new terminal building is proposed to be constructed in stages consistent with passenger growth. The facility will improve the airport's aesthetics by separating cargo from commercial aircraft and will be able to handle large aircraft such as Boeing 747, Airbus A380, Boeing 777 and other similar aircraft. The new design will reduce airport congestion and improve passenger comfort and create a positive passenger experience. Work on the airport will take about two years. Work is set to begin in July 2011.
Airlines and destinations
|Air Transat||Seasonal charter: Montreal-Trudeau, Toronto-Pearson|
|British Airways||London-Gatwick, Port of Spain, Grenada|
|Canjet||Seasonal charter: Montreal-Trudeau, Toronto-Pearson|
|Delta Air Lines||Atlanta|
|JetBlue Airways||New York-JFK|
|Thomas Cook Airlines||Charter: Barbados, Manchester (UK)|
|US Airways||Charlotte, Philadelphia|
|Virgin Atlantic||London-Gatwick, Grenada, Port of Spain|
|Amerijet International||Miami, Port of Spain, Grenada|
|DHL Aviation||Port of Spain|
Accidents and incidents
Quebecair flight 714, a Boeing 707 jetliner operating a charter flight from Toronto, caught a wind shear while on approach to Hewanorra international airport on 19 February 1979. The windshear caused the aircraft to halt its descent while already over the threshold. The copilot who was flying at that time retarded the throttles, however at that very moment the aircraft had passed the windshear zone and the nose of the aircraft slammed into the runway and bounced twice, destroying the nose landing gear. There were no fatalities and only minor injuries reported in this incident. The aircraft was damaged beyond repair and was written off.
British Airways flight 2158 ran off the end of the runway while taxiing to its take off point on a departure from Hewanorra International Airport to London-Gatwick on 6 June 2010. The nose wheel dug a large semi-circular furrow in the soft ground as the pilot attempted the required 180° turn, the rear wheels remained on the tarmac. It took a while for the aircraft Boeing 777-200 to be removed after which it was deemed undamaged and made its flight to Gatwick some 30 hours later. A few flights were diverted to other airports because of the incident. There were no injuries or fatalities.
- Airport information for TLPL at World Aero Data. Data current as of October 2006.Source: DAFIF.
- "Hewanorra Outstation." Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority. Retrieved on 23 December 2012.