The lack of runway capacity and congestion at Perth Airport is costing the airline industry + it’s passengers an estimated $72 million a year according to a State treasury report released.
The figures come as the airport announced yesterday that passenger numbers increased 10pc last month to a record 1.17 million which is putting even more strain on the infrastructure at the airport.
Troy Buswell, Treasurer and Transport Minister who commissioned this report said the figures “strengthened the case for a third runway”
This analysis shows that congestion has an adverse impact on the economy, business and individuals
While the runway issue is not the sole driver of congestion, it shows that Perth Airport needs to build a third runway as soon as possible
The report however, does not include the flow-on costs imposed on the businesses and individuals affected by flight delays. The resource sector standard for lost production at a mine site is $100,000 an hour.
Clearly the real cost to the economy is much higher – Troy Buswell added
The Chamber of Minerals and Energy manager of people strategies, Bruce Campbell-Fraser said it was extremely hard to get staff to mine sites, well rested and on time.
The cost of delays is dramatic when managing changeovers – he said
The treasury said 20pc of scheduled flights in and out of Perth were delayed about 30 minutes, similar to the US. This figure did not include charter flights which carried most FIFO workers.
Perth Airport handled 140,000 passengers in the past financial year. Passenger and plane traffic through the airport has grown to 40pc in the last 5 years.
A Perth Airport spokesman said he could not comment because it had not seen the treasury report.
Last year, the airport committed to the process to build the third runway but is expected to take four years because of the lengthy environmental approvals process.
The airport, air traffic control provider (Airservices) and airlines are also working together through a program to increase the efficiency of the airport’s operations and is designed to eliminate delays in the afternoon. According to Airservices, the morning demand for flights can only be met by a third – and second parallel runway.
From February, the airport will introduce a slot system for weekday morning flights to eliminate the chance the chaos of planes queuing up for up to 45 minutes at one time.