Boeings departure from Twente Airport safety never in question

Recent events at Twente Airport prompted the board of Technology Base, of which Twente Airport is a part, to draw up a factual account. This account was coordinated with the Environmental and Transport Inspectorate (ILT). This factual and neutral account of the facts was presented today to the Enschede city council and the provincial states of Overijssel.

In recent months there has been a difference of opinion between Twente Airport and ILT about the departure of 6 (temporarily) parked Lufthansa Boeing 747s to be dismantled elsewhere. In the week of Oct. 26, intensive and constructive discussions took place between Technology Base and ILT on this issue. As a result, agreement has been reached on how the parked Boeings can leave. Meanwhile, ILT has adjusted the safety certificate for Twente Airport accordingly and has granted exemption from the requirement of a reinforced runway verge and turning capability at the runway ends. The first Boeing 747 took off on Tuesday, November 3.

Safe departure

In the discussion between Twente Airport and ILT, the primary concern for both organizations was to ensure the safety of aircraft departures. The difference of opinion between Twente Airport and ILT focused on the interpretation of the safety certificate that had been issued and on the room available in regulations to grant exemptions from the rules in specific cases. 

Jan Schuring, Director Technology Base: "The result achieved confirms that the safe departure of these large aircraft was never in question and gives confidence in the further relationship with the ILT." 

Fact sheet

The above events and the related questions from the Council and States prompted the General Board of Technology Base to ask the project organization for a timeline with a factual overview. Together with a memo on the substantive difference of opinion with ILT, this factual account was presented to the Council and Parliament on November 19. ILT received this fact sheet in advance and comments were incorporated. A technical session has been scheduled with council and state members to answer questions about this memo and the factual report.

Maintenance cluster

The further development of the maintenance cluster for smaller aircraft than the Boeing 747 at Twente Airport is not off the table. Major investment decisions do not happen overnight and go through subject-specific, professional analyses of all relevant risks. The dispute with the ILT does not change that. Twente Airport continues to discuss with Lufthansa and other airlines the possibilities for aircraft storage and maintenance.

The results of the risk analyses and the discussions with the Council and the States will be included in the discussions that the Executive Board has about the proposed plans and the appropriate power and management of the implementing organization; subjects that have been and are the subject of constant attention in the discussions of the Executive Board.

The factual report can be downloaded here.

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