Widerøe

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about a regional airline. For other uses, see Widerøe (disambiguation).
Widerøe
Wideroe logo.svg
IATA
WF
ICAO
WIF
Callsign
WIDEROE
Founded 19 February 1934
Hubs  • Bergen-Flesland
 • Bodø
 • Oslo-Gardermoen
 • Oslo-Torp (Sandefjord)
 • Tromsø-Langnes
Frequent-flyer program EuroBonus
Airport lounge Scandinavian Lounge
Fleet size 42
Destinations 47
Company slogan Hele Norge. Hele tiden (Norwegian). All of Norway. All of the time (English).
Headquarters Bodø, Norway
Key people Lars Kobberstad (CEO)
Website www.wf.no

Widerøe's Flyveselskap AS, trading as Widerøe, is a regional airline operating in Norway. Its fleet includes 42 Bombardier Dash 8 aircraft (39-78 seats), serving 41 domestic and 6 international destinations. The largest regional airline in the Nordic countries, Widerøe has a turnover of NOK 2.9 billion, 2.93 million annual passengers, 1,500 employees and makes 400 take-offs and landings each day. The public service obligation services (PSO) with the Norwegian Ministry of Transport and Communications on the regional airport network account for slightly less than half of Widerøe's operations. The remaining services consist of services on primary airports in Northern Norway, and services from Sandefjord Airport, Torp to other primary airports, and some international services from Oslo/Gardermoen, Sandefjord/Torp, Kristiansand/Kjevik, Stavanger/Sola, Bergen/Flesland and Trondheim/Værnes.

The company has its head offices in Bodø, although it retains a large administrative center in Lysaker.[1] The main bases are Sandefjord Airport, Torp, Bodø Airport, Tromsø Airport, Bergen Airport, Flesland and Oslo Airport, Gardermoen. Widerøe's operations are focused on point-to-point transit, although the airline essentially feeds medium-haul and international airlines at the bases. Widerøe retains interlining agreements and participates in EuroBonus for international flights.

The airline was founded in 1934, and started with air shows, aviation schools, advertisement flights, cartography and other general aviation activities. In 1936, Widerøe started scheduled sea plane flights and, from 1940, also ambulance flights. During the 1940s and 1950s, the airline increased its sea plane routes and established a main fleet of DHC-3 Otters and Noorduyn Norseman. From 1968, Widerøe started flying to the STOLports built in Northern and Western Norway using DHC-6 Twin Otters, and later also with Dash 7. In 1989, Widerøe bought Norsk Air and started services from Sandefjord. During the 1990s, it replaced all its aircraft with Dash 8; in the 2000s it was bought by the SAS Group and took over SAS Commuter's operations in Northern Norway. In 2010, Widerøe took over the regional SAS services in Western Norway.

History[edit]

Main article: History of Widerøe

Establishment[edit]

Widerøe old logo.png

Widerøe was established on the foundations of two small airlines. The first was the company, Lotsberg & Skappel, which Helge Skappel owned along with Leiv Brun, Ditlef Smith and Erik Engnæs, operating a Gipsy Moth. The other was Widerøe & Bjørneby, which was founded by Viggo Widerøe and Halvor Bjørneby, and operated a Simmonds Spartan. Cooperation started between the two companies as well as Norsk Aero Klubb to establish air shows in Eastern Norway. During the winter, they stationed the planes at mountain resorts and made revenue from flying skiers into the wilderness. Advertisement flights were introduced, where a company or product name was painted on the hull, with a neon-light version underneath, and leaflets dropped from the planes.[2]

Loading post onto a Stinson Reliant LN-BAR in Oslo in 1936

Viggo Widerøe travelled to the United States with NOK 25,000 in 1933, and flew back a Waco Cabin. The same year, the company bought five used de Havilland DH.60 Moths from the Air Force and started aviation schools both in Oslo and Bergen. On 19 February 1934, Widerøe's Flyveselskap A/S was founded by Viggo Widerøe, Einar Isdahl and Arild Widerøe. For the winter months, skis were equipped on the Cabin and Spartan. The company also started ambulance flights. In April, the company expanded their share capital from NOK 25,000 to NOK 65,000. The money was used to buy a sea version of a Cabin, and on 15 June started flying the post route from Oslo via Kristiansand and Stavanger to Haugesund. During the summer, the company arranged a summer camp for youth, and the company bought a sail plane.[3]

The company started a corporation with four regional steam ship companies—Vesterålske, Nordenfjeldske, Stavangerske and Arendalske—and on 21 November they established the company Norske Kystflyveruter and applied for all concessions to fly postal services around the coast, as well as to Gothenburg in Sweden. At the same time, Fred. Olsen & Co. and Bergenske bought Det Norske Luftfartselskap (DNL) and also applied for the routes. Widerøe wanted to use seaplanes, while DNL was going to use land planes. The government urged to companies to split the routes between them, but before the negotiations were completed, Cabinet Nygaardsvold was appointed, and they granted DNL a ten-year concession on all domestic flights.[4]

Photo of the construction of Oslo City Hall, taken by Widerøe in 1936

After losing all scheduled flights, Widerøe expanded to Northern Norway and started taxi flights. In 1935, the company also started in the cartography business. In Oslo, the company built a summer base for sea planes at Ingierstand, and a winter base for ski planes at Bogstadvannet. Around Bergen, the airline would land at cruise ships and offer flights to tourists to see the fjords and mountains. In March 1936, 51% of the company was taken over by DNL as part of a private placement. This allowed DNL to transfer some of its concessions to Widerøe, who started flying Oslo – Lillehammer/TrettenGolåFeforTyinholmen/Nystuen, mainly aimed at tourists. For this route, a Bellanca Senior Pacemaker was bought. Widerøe also wet operated DNL's route from Oslo to Gothenburg, the route Tromsø to Honningsvåg and Bergen – VadheimSlidreBalestrand. This routes in part used a Stinson Reliant.[5]

In 1937, the company made 44 flights along the coast of Antarctica, covering 4,000 kilometres (2,500 mi) of coast at least 50 kilometres (31 mi) inland. These flights were ordered by Lars Christensen for cartography. From July to September, the company also flew a route between Trondheim and Bodø. The base at Bogstad in Bergen was expanded, and the company was granted a monopoly on all aerial photography flights for the mapping authories. During 1938, the Bogstad workshop and Birger Hønningstad started a cooperation where Widerøe built the Hønningstad Norge-planes. The same year, a plane went to Svalbard for cartographic work, and a route was started from Trondheim via Brønnøysund, Sandnessjøen, Bodø, Narvik and Harstad to Tromsø. For three months, the route was expanded to Kirkenes via Hammerfest and Vadsø.[6]

A Waco RNF LN-EAB at Ingierstand in 1937

Following the outbreak of World War II on 2 September 1939, all pilots were conscripted and there was a ban on civilian aviation. DNL was worried about the steady losses the company was making, and suggested liquidating the company. On 5 December 1939, DNL's shares were transferred to the other shareholders. In 1940, the company started flying ambulance flights for the military. The planes were rented from the airline while the crew were conscripted. Widerøe was also granted dispensation from the civil aviation ban to continue its school at Bogstad. Following the German invasion of Norway, many pilots and aircraft of Widerøe were flown to Mjøsa were they served as part of the defence. All planes were grounded during the occupation, and German authorities demanded that magnetos and propellers be handed in. The workshop at Bogstad was kept busy with production of ambulance sleds for the German military. In secret, the company also started building a Hønningstad C-5 Polar ambulance plane at Bogstad. The German authorities sealed the company's archives, so only people with German permission had access to aerial photos.[7]

Mixed operations[edit]

The cockpit of Widerøe de Havilland Canada Dash-8 103. First Officer at the controls during approach to Sørkjosen Airport.

After the liberation of Norway in 1945, there was still a flight ban, and the employees at Bogstad were hired by the Royal Norwegian Air Force at Oslo Airport, Fornebu. The company's Piper Cubs were restored and the company bought a SAI KZ III and a Fairchild Cornell for schduled service. A Hønninstad Norge B was completed and two Messerschmitt Taifun for aerial photography were taken over from Luftwaffe. For taxi flights, the company bought three Fairchild Argus. The company received permission to fly from 2 February 1946. The same year, the company's mechanical division was moved from Bogstad to Fornebu. In 1947, Widerøe bought a Republic Seabee, but further purchases were not permitted by the authorities to keep down the outflow of currency. That year, Forenede Industrier bought the majority of the company. Viggo Widerøe was again hired as managing director. The Hønninstad C-5 Polar was completed, but serial production for the Air Force did not commence due to aid from Canada.[8]

In 1948, the company was awarded concession for a route from Arendal to Oslo. That year, the company merged with Narvik-based Polarfly, and changed its name to Widerøe's Flyveselskap & Polarfly A/S. The take-over included four Norseman craft. This made it possible for the new company to station two planes at Skattøre in Tromsø. The following year, the company innovated by taking aerial photographs of farms that were sold to the owners. In 1950, the Western Norway routes were reduced to Stavanger – Haugesund – Bergen for DNL. From November 1950 to February 1951, the company again participated on an Antarctic expedition. The same winter, the company started flight training for the Air Force using Fairchild Cornell-aircraft. The company also won a contract to maintain all the aircraft of that type for the Air Force.[9]

In 1951, the company replaced its Avro Anson V aerial photography plane with four Airspeed Oxford from the Royal Norwegian Air Force. Starting 21 May 1951, the company started its first own scheduled service in Northern Norway, from Narvik via Svolvær to Bodø. In 1952, the company established itself at Trondheim Airport, Lade with a Seabee taxi- and ambulance plane as well as school activity. In 1952, the Northern Norway-route was expanded to also serve Gravdal. The following year, a de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver was bought for use in Finnmark. The company chose to differentiate, and started production of emergency rafts, refrigerated garages in aluminium and thermo elements for the industry. In 1954, the company received a subcontract from Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS), the successor of DNL, to operate a seaplane route from Tromsø via Alta, Hammerfest and Kirkenes to Vadsø. For this route, the company bought its first de Havilland Canada DHC-3 Otter. That year the company had 21 mechanics in Oslo and 14 in Tromsø, and signed a contract to service the Air Force' Norseman aircraft.[10]

Aerial view of Lyngen Alps in Troms, from the cockpit of Widerøe de Havilland Canada Dash-8 103. The regional routes of Widerøe cover the most challenging terrain in Europe, and are operated year-round almost regardless of weather.

In 1956, the company took into use two Lockheed 12As for aerial photography. One of these was that year used in Liberia and Syria. The same year, the company took over SAS' last Junkers Ju-52 and put it into service on the sea route Bodø – Harstad – Tromsø, and thus Widerøe operated all of SAS' sea routes. The next year, SAS granted a loan so the number of Otters could be increased to four, replacing the Ju-52. From 1 July 1958, the company changed its name back to just Widerøe's Flyveselskap A/S. That year, both a Cessna 170 and a Cornell crashed, killing five people between them. The company also took over SAS' aviation school needs at Fornebu. For aerial photography in Svalbard, the company bought a Douglas RB-26C Invader. To purchase the Air Force' last nine Norseman planes in 1959 for NOK  the company cooperated with Solbergfly and bough five for NOK 125,000. This proved to ambitious, and two were sold to Aero Sahara. In 1960, the first land airports in Finnmark were opened, and SAS' demand for sea routes was reduced. Widerøe retired all Norseman planes from service, and were left with only Otters.[11]

The contract to build a base for the military on Jan Mayen was awarded to the company's mechanical division in 1959. It was prefabricated at Fosser and completed in 1960. In 1964, this division was made a subsidiary, Widerøe Industry A/S. Until 1963, Helikopter Service used Widerøe for mechanical services. In 1962, the company bought a Douglas DC-3 that was put into charter traffic. The plane was prone with technical difficulties, and was replaced by one bought from Braathens SAFE in September. The next charter plane was a Nord 260 Super Broussard that came in December. By 1965, the company had used four different DC-3s and bought three Nords. In 1963, new primary airports opened in Finnmark, and SAS extended their route to Kirkenes Airport, Høybuktmoen. This forced all sea plane routes north of Tromsø to be terminated, and the company was left with routes between Bodø and Tromsø. The Trondheim base was closed 31 December 1963, following the decision to redevelop the area for industry and only use the airport at Værnes.[12]

Widerøe's management wanted to have larger aircraft for charter. It started a corporation with Nordair of Denmark, from which the airline borrowed a Douglas DC-6 with the livery Widerøe Nordair, and started flights from Oslo in 1964. It quickly proved unprofitable and was terminated. In 1964, a DC-3 parked at Fornebu with passengers burnt up, but no-one was killed. All charter operations were terminated in 1965, after the company had failed to find financing for larger aircraft. During the early 1960s, the company bought new photography planes from Cessna: a 320 and a 185. In 1964, the Bodø–Narvik route was terminated and the following year the airline stated sea flights from Bodø to the islands of Røst and Værøy using a Norseman. The ambulance bases during the 1960s were Bodø, Narvik and Tromsø, although also Alta and Hammerfest had ambulance planes stationed in 1964.[13]

New concessions for seaplanes were granted in 1966, with the routes Tromsø–Hammerfest and Bodø – Mo i Rana – Sandnessjøen – Brønnøysund – RørvikNamsosHell. Additional Otters were bought from the Royal Norwegian Air Force for these routes. This made it possible to sell all the Norsemans.[14] New Cessna 411A, 206 and 337-planes were bought in 1968 to replace the older photography planes.

Regional aviation[edit]

A Twin Otter in 1970

In 1965 Håkon Kyllingmark from the Conservative Party was appointed Minister of Transport. He rejected the previous government's proposal to build nine new primary airports, stating that with the contemporary funding it would take about 25 years to complete them. The last 12 years, NATO-funding had been used to build new air stations, and these had also been taken into civilian use. Kyllingmark felt that there were sufficient primary airports, but he still saw the need to build new airports for distant areas. He proposed a network of secondary airports between Bergen and Kirkenes, that would use short take-off and landing (STOL)-aircraft to feed to the primary airports. Parliament passed his proposal, that included also building three of the intended nine primary airports.[15]

The first four airports were located in Helgeland between Bodø and Trondheim: Mo i Rana, Sandnessjøen, Brønnøysund and Namsos. Each airport had a 800 metres (2,600 ft) long and 30 metres (98 ft) wide runway, in addition to a small terminal building. Since Widerøe held the Helgeland sea concession, they were offered to operate the route with state and SAS subsidies. The routes would take into use de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter planes and would allow all-year connections to the primary airports in Trondheim and Trondheim. The airline rented a hangar at Trondheim Airport, and all pilots needed to be re-certified to C- and instrument certificates. The first service was 1 July 1968. The following year, the company had NOK 1 million in state grants to the sea operations, and NOK 850,000 in SAS grants the Helgeland route.[16]

Despite higher income than anticipated, Widerøe lost money on the trials. However, they proved highly popular among the passengers and, in 1969, parliament voted to build new airports.[17] The same year, SAS bought Forenede Industrier's shares in Widerøe, and Per Bergsland replaced Viggo Widerøe as CEO. In 1970, the company was split in two: the aerial photography division was sold to the competitor Fjellanger, and the new company Fjellanger Widerøe was created. Scheduled services remained with Widerøe. The same year, the mechanical division at Fornebu was sold to Fred. Olsens Flyveselskap and a second Twin Otter was bought. In 1971, a 20% primary placement was issued and the company moved its head office to Bodø. At the end of the seaplane season, the ambulance stations in Bodø and Tromsø and the three remaining Otters were sold. Widerøe became a pure land-based, scheduled airline.[18]

The company bought a 817 square metres (8,790 sq ft) hangar at Bodø Airport as its new mechanical base. The one Twin Otter was sold, but the company received a permanent concession for both the Helgeland Route as well as for the new airports on the West Coast: Florø, Førde, Sogndal and Ørsta/Volda that were connected to Bergen. The company also received permission to fly between Bergen, Ålesund, Kristiansund and Ørland. It also took over some of SAS flights between Bodø, Bardufoss, Andenes and Tromsø. A new mechanical base was built in Florø and had a 900 square metres (9,700 sq ft) hangar and six employees. The new routes started on 1 July 1971. Exactly one year later, the airports in Lofoten & Vesterålen were opened: Svolvær, Leknes, Stokmarknes and Andenes and connected to Bodø. Also the new primary airport at Molde was opened on 5 April 1972. Five Twin Otters were in use in 1972, with additional two added in 1973.[19]

The routes to Røst and Værøy were in 1972 converted to a helicopter route, that was flown by Helilift using two Sikorsky S-58Ts. In 1973, Widerøe received NOK 1.9 million in state subsidies for the helicopter route and NOK 13.6 million for the regional routes. That year, the company signed an option for two de Havilland Canada DHC-7 Dash 7. In 1974, Widerøe tested from 1 May to 30 September a route from Sogndal to Oslo over the mountains. On 1 August, five airports were opened in Northern Troms and Finnmark: Sørkjosen, Hammerfest, Mehamn, Berlevåg and Vadsø, and connected to Tromsø, Alta, Lakselv and Kirkenes. This required that the company receive two new Twin Otters. A technical base was built at Hammerfest. Three more airports opened afterwards: Sandane on 1 July 1975, Narvik on 1 October 1975 and Honningsvåg on 1 July 1977. By 1978, the company had twelve Twin Otters.[20]

Bodø Airport is Widerøe's main hub

In 1976, a Sikorsky helicopter was bought from Helilift, and the operation transferred to Offshore Helicopters. It crashed in 1977, and a new Sikorsky S-58T was bought in 1978. In 1980, Offshore Helicopters was bought by Helikopter Service, who took over operation. Starting on 1 January 1982, the Røst and Værøy routes were taken over using Bell 212 helicopters.[21] Starting on 10 April 1980, Widerøe started an international service on behalf of SAS on the route from Trondheim to Östersund and Sundsvall in Sweden. Services terminated on 28 April 1982. The Sogndal–Oslo route was taken into permanent use in 1979, but only during the summer. A Twin Otter simulator was bought in 1981.[22]

The first two Dash 7s were taken into use in March and May 1981, with a third delivered in April 1983. The pressurized-cabin planes had a capacity of 50 passengers, and Widerøe began using flight attendants for the first time. From September 1983, the Dash 7s were used on the all-year route Oslo–Sogndal–Florø. Following SAS' rearrangement of routes in Northern Norway in 1983, Widerøe was subcontracted the routes Tromsø–Lakselv, Bardufoss–Bodø, Tromsø–Evenes–Bodø, all to be flown with Dash 7, along with the routes to Hammerfest and Vadsø. This required a further two Dash 7s to be delivered.[23]

The airline's last sea plane was decommissioned in 1971. In total the airline operated 12 Twin Otters and 8 Dash 7s at the beginning of the 1990s. In 1992 the airline made an agreement with the Norwegian government in which the airline replaced all of its Twin Otter and Dash 7 aircraft with de Havilland Canada Dash-8-100 aircraft, seating 37. As a result of the agreement, the STOL network in Norway would be a PSO operation from 1 April 1997. The airline won all the routes in 1997, but in 2000 the airline had to relinquish the route Bodø-Røst to Guard Air, but regained it after Guard Air folded. In 2003 the route was surrendered to Kato Air. Since then the airline has lost the routes to Andenes, Fagernes, Florø and Røros, though it in 2006 has recaptured the routes to Narvik and in 2007 the routes to Andenes.

Two Dash 8-100 aircraft at Trondheim Airport, Værnes

From Sandefjord to the world[edit]

Widerøe southern Norway offices

In 1989 the airline acquired Norsk Air, an airline based at Sandefjord Airport, Torp, for free from the shipping company Kosmos. The airline operated four Embraer EMB 120 Brasilia aircraft, and flew from Sandefjord to Copenhagen, Bergen, Stavanger and Trondheim as well as from Skien Airport, Geiteryggen to Bergen and Stavanger. In 1991 the airline changed its name to Widerøe Norsk Air, before it was amalgamated into Widerøe in 1996, the same year the Brasilias were replaced with 50 seat Dash-8-300s. Widerøe Norsk Air also operated the Brasilias between 1991 and 1993 on a route between Sandefjord / Torp - Kristiansand / Kjevik and London Gatwick Airport, but it was closed partially due to an over establishment of flights from Norway. Today the airline operations from Sandefjord are its most profitable.

Fred. Olsen & Co. decided to buy part of Widerøe again in the late 1960s, and in 1970 Braathens SAFE bought 18% of the company. In 1991 Braathens SAFE and SAS sold to Fred. Olsen, who owned 64% of the company. The other owners at that time were Torghatten Trafikkselskap, Nordlandsbanken and Fylkesbaatane i Sogn og Fjordane. In 1997 Fred. Olsen sold 29% of its stock to SAS Group, who later bought the rest of the company.

Following the deregulation of the Norwegian airline market in 1994, Widerøe launched new international routes, which included flights from Bergen and Stavanger to Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Newcastle in the UK, as well as from Trondheim to Copenhagen and Stockholm. For some of these operations, Widerøe acquired 76-seat Dash-8-Q400 aircraft. After Scandinavian Airlines bought Braathens in 2002, the group decided to operate Braathens' regional routes in Western Norway with the SAS Commuters Fokker 50 aircraft operating in Northern Norway. The routes in Western Norway were until then operated by Norwegian Air Shuttle, who then became a low-cost carrier. SAS Commuter left its operations in Northern Norway to Widerøe, who operate all the SAS Group's regional routes north of Trondheim. This involved that Widerøe took over the routes from Tromsø to Alta, Lakselv and Kirkenes, and the route from Evenes to Tromsø, Bodø and Trondheim from October 2002.[24]

In November 2012, SAS Scandinavian Airlines announced that it planned to sell Wideroe. SAS also plans to sell its ground handling division and as well a lot of its fixed assets and hoped to raise around 440 million USD through this. Flybe has already announced it´s interest in an acquisition.[25] In May 2013 the SAS Group sold 80 percent of its stakes in Wideroe to Norwegian investors.[26] The sale is expected to close in September 2013.[27]

Destinations[edit]

Widerøe holds most of the public service obligation contracts with the Ministry of Transport and Communications to connect regional airports to primary airports. Twenty-five such airports were served in a contract running from 1 April 2009 to 31 March 2012, with the company having lost the bid for services to three. The services connect smaller communities and towns to regional centers and to primary airports which provide onwards service with jet aircraft.

Dash-8 103 at Sandane Airport, Anda

Eight airports in Finnmark and one in Troms are connected to Tromsø Airport, with a limited number of services also connecting to two of the three primary airports in Finnmark—Alta and Kirkenes. Between Tromsø and Bodø, Widerøe serves six airports, of which two connect to Tromsø and all to Bodø. South of Bodø, there are six airports in Helgeland and Namdalen, which are all connected to Bodø and Trondheim Airport, Værnes. In Sogn og Fjordane and Sunnmøre, Widerøe connects four airports to Oslo Airport, Gardermoen and Bergen Airport, Flesland.[28]

Widerøe's main domestic hauling between primary airports is from its base at Sandefjord Airport, Torp. Services are provided up to five times per day to Trondheim, Stavanger and Bergen, as well as seasonal services to Bodø and Tromsø. In Northern Norway, Widerøe operates some services connecting primary airports, including the links from Tromsø to Alta, Hammerfest, Kirkenes and Vadsø Airport, and connecting Harstad/Narvik Airport, Evenes to Tromsø, Bodø and Trondheim.[28][29]

International services are provided to and from five Norwegian airports to seven foreign airports in Sweden, Denmark and the United Kingdom. From Sandefjord and Trondheim, Widerøe connects to Scandinavian Airline's hub at Copenhagen Airport. From Oslo, Widerøe operates four daily services to Gothenburg-Landvetter Airport, as well as summer routes to Visby Airport and Bornholm Airport. From Bergen and Stavanger, Widerøe serves Aberdeen Airport and from Stavanger Newcastle Airport.[28]

In 2010, Widerøe took over the regional routes previously operated by SAS in Western Norway; these connect Kristiansand and Kristiansund Airport, Kvernberget to Stavanger and Bergen, and Haugesund and Molde to Bergen. These routes will replace the SAS Fokker 50 aircraft with -300 and Q400 aircraft.[30]

Fleet[edit]

Dash 8-311 at Manchester Airport

Since 2000, the airline has operated a fleet consisting entirely of de Havilland Canada/Bombardier Dash 8 aircraft. As of 2012, Widerøe is the first and only airline in the world to operate every single variant of the Dash 8 simultaneously, and is one of the few airlines to ever operate all variants of the Dash 8, as well as the older DHC-6 Twin Otter and Dash 7. In 2008, Widerøe was the world's third-largest operator of the -100-series, behind Piedmont Airlines and Jazz.[31] As of January 2014, the Widerøe fleet consists of the following aircraft:[32]

Widerøe Fleet
Aircraft In Service Orders Passengers Routes
Bombardier Dash 8-100 20 39 Domestic
Bombardier Dash 8-Q200 3 39 Domestic
Bombardier Dash 8-300 8 50 Domestic, international
Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 NextGen 11 78 Domestic, international
Total 42 0

Service[edit]

As part of the SAS Group, Widerøe participates in the EuroBonus frequent flyer program. Earning of points is possible on all international routes, while redemption can be done on all international routes and all domestic routes not part of the public service obligation.[29]

Complementary coffee, tea and water is offered on all flights with Dash 8-300 and Q400 aircraft, if the flight lasts for at least 40 minutes. A complementary meal or light snack is offered depending on the route and time of day. Flights before 09:30 have breakfast; after then there is a snack. All international flights have free newspapers. On flights to the United Kingdom, flexible ticket holders receive a better breakfast on flights before 09:30, and a meal and dessert after then. On routes with Dash 8-100 aircraft, snacks and cold drinks are for sale. Summer routes have free tea and coffee, with snacks and cold drinks for sale. Supplementary snacks, drinks and articles are available for sale on all flights.[33]

Incidents and accidents[edit]

  • On 5 March 1964, a Douglas DC-3 crashed during takeoff at Oslo Airport, Fornebu. All 18 occupants survived, but the aircraft was written off.[34]
  • On 28 March 1968, an Otter seaplane crashed at Rossfjordstraumen. There were no fatalities, but the aircraft was written off.[35]
  • On 11 March 1982, Widerøe Flight 933, operated by the Twin Otter LN-BNK crashed into the Barents Sea near Gamvik, en route from Berlevåg Airport to Mehamn Airport. All investigations have concluded that the crash resulted from structural failure of the aircraft's tail caused by severe clear-air turbulence. However, there has been significant controversy surrounding this, as claims have been made that the aircraft collided with a British Royal Air Force Harrier Jump Jet flying outside its designated operations area during a NATO exercise.[36]
  • On 6 May 1988, Widerøe Flight 710, operated by a Dash 7, crashed near Brønnøysund, killing all 36 passengers on board in the worst-ever Dash 7 accident. The accident occurred when the aircraft, on approach from Namsos Airport, descended from 1500 ft to 550 ft too early in the landing procedure, colliding with the mountain Torghatten.[37]
  • On 12 April 1990, Widerøe Flight 839, operated by a Twin Otter, crashed into the seas one minute after take-off from Værøy Airport, killing all five on board. The cause of the crash had been strong and unpredictable wind gusts during take-off, which had exceeded the plane's limits and created a break-up in the plane's tail rudder, so the plane became uncontrollable. The airport was closed after the incident and replaced by Værøy Heliport.[38][39]
  • On 27 October 1993, Widerøe Flight 744, operated by a Twin Otter, crashed while approaching Namsos Airport, Høknesøra en route from Trondheim Airport, Værnes, killing the crew and 4 passengers. Having descended from 1100 ft, the aircraft were supposed to stabilize on 500 ft but instead continued to descend, until it crashed into a ridge 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) from the airport.[40][41]
  • On 14 June 2001, the starboard main undercarriage of a Dash 8-100 aircraft collapsed on landing at Båtsfjord Airport after a flight from Alta Airport, resulting in substantial damage to the aircraft. No injuries were reported to the three crew and 24 passengers on board. The aircraft, LN-WIS, was written off.[42][43]
  • On 1 May 2005, the Dash 8-100 LN-WIK crashed during landing at Hammerfest Airport. Just before landing the wind speed veered and increased, creating a tail wind. The increase in the descent rate was compensated, but was insufficient, and the plane had a touch-down on the right main landing gear, with the leg failing and the aircraft sliding on its belly. The aircraft was written off and Widerøe was criticized for permitting landings under high winds and gusts.[44][45] The Norwegian Civil Aviation Authority imposed stricter wind regulations upon the airport.
  • On 15 September 2010, Dash 8-100 LN-WIF made an emergency landing at Sandnessjøen Airport, Stokka. Just before landing, the aircraft was hit by a strong gust of wind and the starboard landing gear collapsed upon landing. There were 39 passengers and 4 crew aboard, all were evacuated safely.[46]

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Headquarters." Widerøe. Retrieved on 15 November 2009. "Widerøes Flyveselskap AS Langstranda 6 P.O Box 247 8001 Bodø Norway" and "Part of our administration is based at Lysaker just outside Oslo. Widerøes Flyveselskap AS Fornebuveien 38/40 0080 Oslo Norway"
  2. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 6–9
  3. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 10–14
  4. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 15–16
  5. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 16–22
  6. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 24–29
  7. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 35–39
  8. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 42–48
  9. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 48–59
  10. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 61–67
  11. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 71–82
  12. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 83–88
  13. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 90–94
  14. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 94–96
  15. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 97–98
  16. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 99–109
  17. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 106–107
  18. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 110–114
  19. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 117–124
  20. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 124–130
  21. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 134, 140
  22. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 135–136
  23. ^ Arnesen, 1984: 136–139
  24. ^ Arnt, Folgerø (17 April 2002). "SAS skal spare penger på rutenedleggelser" (in Norwegian). Norwegian News Agency. p. 23. 
  25. ^ volaspheric: flybe interested in Wideroe acquisition
  26. ^ "SAS offloads 80% in Widerøe to Norwegian investors for €235million - ch-aviation.com". Ch-aviation.ch. Retrieved 2014-01-27. 
  27. ^ SAS Gets OK to Sell Wideroe online.wsj.com Retrieved on 22 August 2013.
  28. ^ a b c "Destinations". Widerøe. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  29. ^ a b "About Eurobonus". Widerøe. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  30. ^ "World Airliner Census". Flight International: 41–63. 19–25 September 2008. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  31. ^ "About Widerøe | Widerøe". Wideroe.no. 1934-02-19. Retrieved 2014-01-27. 
  32. ^ "In-flight meals". Widerøe. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  33. ^ "05 Mar 1964". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  34. ^ "28 Mar 1968". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  35. ^ "11 Mar 1982". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  36. ^ "06 May 1988". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  37. ^ "12 Apr 1990". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  38. ^ Accident Investigation Board Norway (1991). "Rapport of luftfartsulykke ved Værøy lufthavn den 12. april 1990 med Twin Otter LN-BNS" (PDF) (in Norwegian). 
  39. ^ "27 Oct 1993". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  40. ^ Accident Investigation Board Norway (1996). "Rapport om luftfartsulykke ved Namsos den 27. oktober 1993 med DHC-6-300 Twin Otter, LN-BNM" (PDF) (in Norwegian). 
  41. ^ "14 Jun 2001". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  42. ^ Accident Investigation Board Norway. "Rapport om luftfartsulykke med Widerøes DeHavilland DHC-8-103 LN-WIS på Båtsfjor lufthavn 14. juni 2001" (in Norwegian). Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  43. ^ "01 May 2005". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  44. ^ "Rapport om luftfartsulykke på Hammerfest lufthavn 1. mai 2005 med DHC-8-103 LN-WIK operert av Widerøes flyveselskap AS" (in Norwegian). Accident Investigation Board Norway. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 
  45. ^ "Ødela understellet ved hard landing". Helgelands Blad (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2010-09-15. 

Bibliography[edit]

  • Arnesen, Odd (1984). På grønne vinger over Norge (in Norwegian). Widerøe's Flyveselskap. 
  • Watle, Per Arne (2004). Oppdrift i motvind (in Norwegian). Oslo: Abstract Forlag. 

External links[edit]