HIAL airports open for essential flights

Scotland’s Highlands and Islands Airports (HIAL) facilities will remain open for essential services flights, despite closing to scheduled flights and routine general aviation traffic from Sunday, March 29, 2020.

Local communities, in particular those on the islands, rely on the airports for vital services and HIAL is working with Transport Scotland and Loganair to agree a skeleton schedule that will ensure the airports continue to provide lifeline and essential services, including NHS passenger transfer, Royal Mail services and flights required by the oil and gas industry.

Airport managers will implement contingency arrangements to ensure airports continue to operate as required.

HIAL managing director Inglis Lyon said, “Our airports are unique in that their core role is to provide lifeline services for our communities in the Highlands and Islands. They are essential to the continued delivery of medical and other critical supplies, the transport of key workers and emergency flights for island communities. Now more than ever there is a need to safeguard those vital services.

“I appreciate this crisis is unknown territory for all of us and at this time we do not know how long these essential measures will remain in place.”

Michael Matheson, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, said, “Our aviation sector is facing an unprecedented challenge in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak, so the Scottish government is working with industry partners to ensure our lifeline air links continue to operate for the remote communities that depend on them.

Information on the skeleton schedule will be posted on the company’s website and social media channels.