Miami Seaplane Base

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Miami Seaplane Base
Airport typePublic use
OwnerCity of Miami, Florida
OperatorChalks Airline, Inc.
ServesMiami, Florida
LocationMiami-Dade County, Florida
Elevation AMSL0 ft / 0 m
Coordinates25°46′42″N 080°10′13″W / 25.77833°N 80.17028°W / 25.77833; -80.17028
Direction Length Surface
ft m
NW/SE 15,000 4,572 Water
Statistics (1926)
Aircraft operations1,950
Based aircraft1

Miami Seaplane Base (IATA: MPB, FAA LID: X44) is a public-use seaplane base located 2 miles (3.2 km) east of the central business district of Miami on Watson Island in Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States.


In 1926, Chalk's International Airlines built an air terminal on a landfill island, Watson Island, where it continued to operate for over 75 years. Its scheduled and other flights by flying boats and amphibian aircraft served many points in the Bahamas and other nearby destinations.

Chalk's moved its flights to its main engineering and operating base at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport after the attacks of September 11, 2001, because of security concerns around the Port of Miami-Dade and increased helicopter traffic around Watson Island. Chalk's ceased operations in December, 2005.

The Seaplane Base is utilized by many operators throughout the year for flights within Florida and to The Bahamas.

Grumman Mallard amphibian of Chalks Airlines at the seaplane base in 1989 after arrival from the Bahamas

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Scheduled service[edit]

Tropic Ocean AirwaysNorth Bimini Airport

Charter operators[edit]

Airline Operating region
Tropic Ocean Airways The Bahamas, Florida
Fly The Whale The Bahamas, Florida
Miami Seaplane Tours Florida
Shoreline Aviation The Bahamas, Florida
Tailwind Air The Bahamas, Florida

Accidents and incidents[edit]

On December 19, 2005 a Chalk's Ocean Airways Grumman G-73T Turbine Mallard crashed off of Miami Beach, Florida. All 20 passengers and crew on board died in the crash, which was attributed to metal fatigue on the starboard wing resulting in separation of the wing from the fuselage.[2]:vii

On July 1, 2018, a Tropic Ocean Airways Cessna 185 crashed on landing into the Miami Seaplane base when the aircraft nosed over into the water. The amphibious airplane sustained substantial damage to the right wing lift strut, empennage, right wing aileron, rudder, and elevator. The pilot was the sole occupant of the aircraft and sustained minor injuries, which was attributed to the pilot's failure to use the before landing checklist.[3]


  1. ^ Template:FDOT Airport Directory, effective 2016
  2. ^ "Aircraft Accident Report - In-flight Separation of Right Wing Flying Boat, Inc. (doing business as Chalk's Ocean Airways) Flight 101 Grumman Turbo Mallard (G-73T), N2969, Port of Miami, Florida, December 19, 2005" (PDF). National Transportation Safety Board. May 30, 2007. Retrieved 2016-10-12.
  3. ^ "Tropic Ocean Airways Cessna 185 N14ED Accident Summary".

External links[edit]