Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

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b.lufthansa
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Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by b.lufthansa » 18 Dec 2009, 10:36

I understand that when it snows, an airport runs into a (full) stop until the snow has been cleared from runways and taxiways. Aircrafts are delayed, flights get cancelled. Remember yesterday at Brussels Airport.

What I don't understand is that the day after (today) flights are still delayed and cancelled, I spoke with a friend who is on board one of the flights out of Brussels Airport and his aircraft is number 40 in the waiting list to get de-icing! I heard that only 2 de-icing trucks are available at the airport and that they can de-ice 10 (!!) aircraft per hour!

Why:

- are there not more de-icing trucks ?
- can 't this be foreseen ?
- in other airports de-icing is done in a flash, why can't this be at Brussels Airport ?

regi
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by regi » 18 Dec 2009, 10:56

We believed Al Gore that the earth is heating up, so we didn't invest in ice age equipment. :)

stefanel
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by stefanel » 18 Dec 2009, 11:20

Maybe because Brussels does not get that many freezing days per year... don't forget than in spite people complaining about the weather, Belgium has a mild climate in winter, warmer than some parts of Southern France or Italy for example (and I'm not talking about the mountains)!
Still, two trucks seem ridiculous for an airport of that importance...

cnc
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by cnc » 18 Dec 2009, 12:34

there are more then 2 deicing trucks + there's the deicing platform.
still deicing takes up time and this morning planes where in line for takeoff up to 1 hour

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SN_fan
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by SN_fan » 18 Dec 2009, 14:01

I remember reading somewhere (maybe the slideshow of Brussels Airport in 2008) that the airport wasn't closed due to weather in the last 5 years. Unless I'm wrong didn't BRU closed yesterday for some hours :-) . So the statistics can be reset .

You not only need the de-icing trucks, but also staff who can operate them.
And I think it's not the favourite of the handling staff they have to perform.

Just invest BRU in nice hot air blowers next to the runway to keep them ice/snow free and a nice de-icing installation like they have in the northern countries where the planes drive through. Even if you use it only 1% of the time, if you are the airport of the capital of Europe you should be prepared for everything you can be prepared for.

Mavke
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by Mavke » 18 Dec 2009, 16:37

Hi all,

Last night we de-iced a few planes for dhl , ethiopian and general aviation

But 2 trucks ??? no no no they have at brussels at least 8-9 trucks but indeed not the people to operated them !!

in weather like yesterday, the handling companies should work together, because now there is some rivalry

I hope they have learned their lessons from yesterday

Ken

b720
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by b720 » 18 Dec 2009, 16:48

Not really, i don t think they learned much... my flight tonight with sn is cancelled..

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sn26567
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by sn26567 » 18 Dec 2009, 16:52

b720 wrote:my flight tonight with sn is cancelled..
... and no way to check on the Brussels Airport website: also frozen due to the large number of visitors!
André
ex Sabena #26567

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9vsmu
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by 9vsmu » 18 Dec 2009, 17:56

b.lufthansa wrote: Why:

- are there not more de-icing trucks ?
- can 't this be foreseen ?
- in other airports de-icing is done in a flash, why can't this be at Brussels Airport ?

a few remarks
- note that de-iceing depends on weather conditions . The hold-over period (time the product -Kilfrost-is active) can vary from 15minutes to a few hours
- a de-icing truck is a rather big investment, especially in a rather mild climate
- some a/c are more sensitive to de-icing than others

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grnkg
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by grnkg » 18 Dec 2009, 19:20

It's always like this in Belgium, even when forecasted well in advance, a couple cm/inches of snow and the entire transport system (air/rail/road) goes belly up.
I just returned from a trip to Berlin, drove 1500 km by car and didn't stand still for a single minute!
Mavke wrote:they have at brussels at least 8-9 trucks
LOL! What a joke! That's the exact number of trucks that is available in LGG, and I think (with all respect for LGG) that traffic in LGG is just a tiny little less than in BRU.
SN_fan wrote:I remember reading somewhere (maybe the slideshow of Brussels Airport in 2008) that the airport wasn't closed due to weather in the last 5 years. Unless I'm wrong didn't BRU closed yesterday for some hours :-) . So the statistics can be reset .
Also closed on 7 October 2009 from 20:00 until 21:00 local due to severe thunderstorm.

Kind regards,
GR.

Nevihta
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by Nevihta » 18 Dec 2009, 19:27

b720 wrote:Not really, i don t think they learned much... my flight tonight with sn is cancelled..
Well, that's prevention, you cannot have the same capacities with snow...
What was your ADES ? maybe it is closing at night, then it's wiser to cancel the flight in advance.

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zteven
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by zteven » 18 Dec 2009, 19:39

There are more then 2 deicing trucks, i can assure you.
The way they are being used, however, is not the best.

The handlers work with 'sequences' meaning that who
calls for deicing first, will be served first. This way
they create a waitinglist, but not according to the STD.

Deicing is always foreseen when temperatures go way
down but staff to operate the trucks is the issue as well.

A deicing isn't done in 2 minutes either. You would be
surprised howmany thousands of liters are used to deice
a widebody. :-)

And let's not forget the malfunctions of the vehicles, when
they run out of water, when they run out of fluid(like killfrost
or Ecowing), when they run out of fuel, etc.

I think an even more serious problem is the way how Brussels
Airport is dealing with snow. I mean, leaving all those stands
covered with ice is dangerous! Also, working around an a/c
will go slower because of precautions that have to be made.

Today 2 workers from Flightcare were hospitalised after being
injured on an icy stand!

Let's hope tomorrow will be better...

Greetz



Steven

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Atlantis
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by Atlantis » 18 Dec 2009, 21:09

Maybe the title can be changed now. Multiple European airports cancelled flights or requested airlines to reduce their number of flights. Gatwick was even closed for 7 hours.

But like some members added correctly, our airports are not foreseen when it snows. And maybe a good idea, why not create two deicing platforms instead of one. You can use one in the neighborhood of concourse B and one at concourse A.

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luchtzak
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by luchtzak » 18 Dec 2009, 22:21

A pilot today confirmed me that only 1!! deicing truck was available for deicing and that for a certain time, maximum was 2 deicing trucks so that's 8 to 10 aircrafts per hour. This doesn't seem enough for a big airport like Brussels. Northerly airports like Stockholm, Copenhagen, Helsinki, ... seem to be better prepared for snow and ice operations.

cnc
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by cnc » 18 Dec 2009, 23:00

luchtzak wrote:A pilot today confirmed me that only 1!! deicing truck was available for deicing and that for a certain time, maximum was 2 deicing trucks so that's 8 to 10 aircrafts per hour. This doesn't seem enough for a big airport like Brussels. Northerly airports like Stockholm, Copenhagen, Helsinki, ... seem to be better prepared for snow and ice operations.
i guess he wasn't looking around or listening to the frequency then. its not because you see only 1 deicing truck on apron 6 that thats the only one for the airport. Also i noticed a lot more delay times due to aircrafts waiting their turn to takeoff then due to deicing

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9vsmu
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by 9vsmu » 18 Dec 2009, 23:54

luchtzak wrote:Northerly airports like Stockholm, Copenhagen, Helsinki, ... seem to be better prepared for snow and ice operations.
You said it yourself. They are better prepared because they have longer and more severe winters. It pays to invest in "winter-figthing" equipment when it lasts a few months a year compared to a few days.

Nevihta
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by Nevihta » 19 Dec 2009, 00:56

Concerning de-icing, there is de-icing at the gate or at the stand, so it's not because you see only two trucks at the platform that only 2 are working.

Concerning 2 de-icing platforms, it depends on the runway configuration. So that would make a lot of combinations, and when there is snow, runway change quite often.

jake99
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by jake99 » 19 Dec 2009, 07:52

8-9 de-ice truck ?

Wrong:

DHL has 2 units
Aviapartner has 4 or 5 units
Flightcare has 9 or 10 units
And there are people they can operate them.
Holdovertime is a big issue especialy when a airport is closed,de-icing a a/c and not knowing when a aircraft can departure is useless.

Darjeeling
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by Darjeeling » 19 Dec 2009, 11:53

One word: BRUSHASA, and certainly not a single lesson of konw-how to give to the Africans. BRU apt is a third world airport.

Crosswind
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Re: Brussels Airport is a disaster when it freezes and snows

Post by Crosswind » 19 Dec 2009, 12:07

BRU airport has nothing to do with Brussels Airlines or Kinshasa, and they never tried to give a "know-how" lesson to anybody... Bru airport is Bru airport, nothing else, nothing more...

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