Norwegian airline passengers stranded by sandstorm

Norwegian airline passengers stranded by sandstorm
Passengers wait outside Tenerife South–Reina Sofia Airport after flights were cancelled due to a sandstorm on February 23rd. Photo: AFP
Airports in the Canary Islands were closed on Sunday and remain at reduced capacity on Monday due to a sandstorm. Customers with low-cost airline Norwegian were among those most affected.

The airline has commissioned extra flights to bring stranded passengers back to Norway on Monday, provided weather conditions enable this, media including public service broadcaster NRK report.

Additionally, the company must conduct a safety check on eight aircraft which were parked at the airport at Las Palmas during the sandstorm, NRK writes.

READ ALSO: What are your rights if your flight is delayed or cancelled in Norway?

Over 2,000 people scheduled to travel to Norway on Sunday were left stranded due to adverse weather on Sunday, which caused the grounding of flights.

“We are working to provide extra flights to bring our passengers home. The first planes will be able to leave from Las Palmas airport late on Monday afternoon, but this depends on the weather situation,” Norwegian wrote in a press statement.

The company said it would inform its passengers as new information becomes available.

SAS is also carrying out checks on its aircraft prior to resuming services and has deployed an extra aircraft to transport passengers on Monday, NRK writes.

Both companies have cancelled regular services to and from the Spanish holiday destination.

SAS head of press relations John Eckhoff told NRK that he could not guarantee flights would resume on Monday.

“Our aim is clearly to get passengers home as soon as possible. But that needs flying conditions to improve and that does not look promising at this time,” Eckhoff told NRK early on Monday.

But an improvement in conditions during the morning resulted in the company releasing a statement in which it described the weather as “good” and confirmed it was commencing safety checks on aircraft parked at Las Palmas.

The sand storm is a result of air from the Sahara desert being blown across the Atlantic Ocean.


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