Ahead of the planned resumption of flights in Nigeria, domestic airlines, Air Peace and Dana Air on Wednesday carried out dry run and shakedown flights.
Spokesman of Air Peace, Mr. Stanley Olisa said in a statement that Air Peace deployed its 25 aircraft, including the Boeing 777s, flying from Lagos to Abuja, Port Harcourt and back to Lagos without passengers.
He said the flights were aimed at ensuring that the aircraft were in good condition, having been grounded for close to three months, although they had been under storage maintenance.
“All the aircraft took to the skies flying to Abuja, Port Harcourt and back to Lagos without passengers,” the airline said in a statement by its spokesperson, Stanley Olisa.
Olisa said the flights were part of measures the airline had developed to guarantee the safety of both passengers and crew when operations resume.
He said the aircraft were brought out of storage and the pilots had been testing them, as all pilots and flight attendants had been retrained in line with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority directives.
On Air Peace’s readiness to resume regular flights, Olisa said, “We have been operating ‘special flights’ to local and international destinations, and we have more of such flights in the works.
“This accentuates our preparedness for operation restart as our pilots, cabin crew and engineers have been hands-on and are current. So, we are 100 per cent ready to resume.”
The airline had been involved in charter and evacuation flights to international destinations based on approvals while the flight ban remained.
Speaking in the same vein, the Media and Communications Manager, of Dana Air, Mr. Kingsley Ezenwa explained that Dana Air had to carry out the exercise to demonstrate its readiness to resume flights as soon as the airspace is opened.
‘’Although all through the lockdown, we had our engineers on ground to ensure proper storage and steady maintenance of our fleet for resumption at any time, and as part of our post COVID resumptions plans, we had to get our team fully on ground on Wednesday for a dry run at the MMA2 terminal under the supervision of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA)’’.
‘’After a successful dry run, we conducted shakedown flights from Lagos to Port Harcourt with our newly acquired Boeing and MD aircraft in our fleet.
He noted that ‘’uncertainty is a normal sentiment among travellers and we had to carry out the dry run and shakedown flights strictly to guarantee the safety of our staff and valued customers. For us, following guidelines and standards is a priority and our customers can rest assured that as restrictions are lifted, all we will be offering our guests is peace of mind on every flight.”
On Dana Air’s level of preparedness, Ezenwa said ‘’Dana Air is 100 per cent ready so is MMA2 and some other terminals we operate from. All Personal Protective Equipment has been made available for all staff, crew and passengers who might not come around with