Kulusuk Airport

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Kulusuk Airport

Mittarfik Kulusuk
Kulusuk-airport-terminal-profile.jpg
Summary
Airport typePublic
OperatorGreenland Airport Authority
(Mittarfeqarfiit)
ServesKulusuk, Greenland
Elevation AMSL117 ft / 36 m
Coordinates65°34′25″N 037°07′25″W / 65.57361°N 37.12361°W / 65.57361; -37.12361Coordinates: 65°34′25″N 037°07′25″W / 65.57361°N 37.12361°W / 65.57361; -37.12361
WebsiteKulusuk Airport
Map
BGKK is located in Greenland
BGKK
BGKK
Location in Greenland
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
11/29 1,199 3,934 Gravel
Statistics (2012)
Passengers14,738
Source: Danish AIS[1]

Kulusuk Airport (Greenlandic: Mittarfik Kulusuk) (IATA: KUS, ICAO: BGKK) is an airport in Kulusuk, a settlement on an island of the same name off the shore of the North Atlantic in the Sermersooq municipality in southeastern Greenland.

History

The airstrip was built by the US defense in 1956, in order to support a Distant Early Warning Line station. The defense station was closed in 1991. Many remnants of the US military use of the field remain, including vehicles and plant used by the military to maintain the strip. Like some other airports in Greenland it was not built at a location suitable for civilian travel, i.e. not near the local major settlement. There are political discussions on building a new airport at Tasiilaq, a major settlement in the region, and to close the Kulusuk Airport.[2]

Operations

Approaching Kulusuk Airport from the east

Unlike the heliport in Tasiilaq on the nearby Ammassalik Island, the airport in Kulusuk can serve STOL aircraft, thus functioning as a mini-hub for Tasiilaq.[3]

Given the increasing number of passengers travelling through the airport due to connections provided by Icelandair, both domestic to Nerlerit Inaat Airport and international to Iceland, the number of fixed-schedule helicopter flights to Tasiilaq[4] is not sufficient to cover demand, due to a single Bell 212 helicopter of Air Greenland stationed at the airport.[5]

Before Air Greenland took over Air Alpha, flights had been operated on-demand by two helicopters. The problem is acknowledged by Air Greenland, however the final decision regarding expansion belongs to the Government of Greenland.[5]

Kulusuk Airport has, in cooperation with Icelandair, installed de-icing facilities since the winter 2014–2015.[6] The terminal building hosts a small cafeteria, and a duty-free stand in the departures/arrivals hall. Accessible restrooms are available.

Access to the departures hall is limited due to the need to screen purchases at the duty-free. Passengers are only allowed to pass through the hall immediately before boarding, resulting in a lack of separation between arriving and departing passengers in the waiting check-in hall. Most arrivals and departures are synchronized in time to facilitate transfers between Icelandair passengers and Air Greenland passengers bound for Nuuk, Tasiilaq and Nerlerit Inaat Airport (and to several settlements in the area from there). The waiting hall is not sufficient to accommodate all passengers, resulting in a pre-boarding chaos.[7]

Airlines and destinations

AirlinesDestinations
Air Greenland Nerlerit Inaat, Nuuk, Tasiilaq
Icelandair Reykjavík

Accidents and incidents

  • On 20 April 1985, a problem was encountered with the additional fuel tanks that an Fokker F27 Friendship (registered YN-BZF) had been fitted with for the delivery flight to Aeronica from Europe to Managua, Nicaragua. Augusto C. Sandino International Airport. The pilots decided to return to Kulusuk Airport in Greenland, the place of their most recent fuel stop, but failed to do so. The aircraft crashed on a snow-covered strip, killing two of the five occupants.[9]

References

  1. ^ Greenland AIP for BGKK – Kulusuk Airport from Naviair
  2. ^ Kangerlussuaq lukkes (in Danish)
  3. ^ Air Greenland destination overview, with a photograph of the runway Archived 6 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Booking system". Air Greenland. Archived from the original on 22 April 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2010.
  5. ^ a b "Utilfredse Air Greenland-kunder". Sermitsiaq (in Danish). 12 April 2010. Retrieved 17 May 2010.
  6. ^ "Defective equipment costs Air Greenland millions". Sermitsiaq. 18 November 2008. Archived from the original on 25 May 2012. Retrieved 17 May 2010.
  7. ^ O'Carroll, Etain (2005). Greenland and the Arctic. Lonely Planet. p. 206. ISBN 1-74059-095-3.
  8. ^ "F-WGSU Accident description". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 5 September 2010.
  9. ^ http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19850420-1

External links

Media related to Kulusuk Airport at Wikimedia Commons