Tuesday 31 January 2023

Juan Santamaría Airport will close 5 hours Wednesday and Thursday

The closure is to allow for the removal of the damaged DHL plane. Passengers are recommended to contact their airline to confirm in changes in their scheduled trips

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QCOSTARICA – The Juan Santamaría (San Jose) International Airport will close on Wednesday (April 13) and Thursday (April 14) the takeoff and landing strip for five hours to remove the DHL plane that crashed last Thursday.

Many were out on Sunday to observe the crashed plane. Photo Mauricio Roman

The closures will take place during the early hours of midnight and 5:00 am on both days “due to mobilization work on the accident aircraft in the green area south of the kilo taxiway”.

The administrator of the air terminal, Aeris, says eight commercial flights and six cargo will be affected.

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The coordination to remove the damaged plane from where it broke in half after landing, began the day of the incident. On Sunday, the cargo that was being transported in the tail section was removed.

Removing the aircraft is not a simple task. Prior to mobilizing the broken parts of the aircraft, they have to stabilize it, place it on a flat site, and unload the content it was transporting. The process also involves the authorities in charge of investigating the accident.

Affected flights

“The operation has continued normally since the day of the incident; We have been as expeditious as possible to efficiently apply the procedures in these situations, resuming runway operations as soon as possible. We work intensely together with the authorities to safely remove the aircraft”, commented Ricardo Hernández, General Director of Aeris.

The airport manager recommended that passengers contact the airline in charge of the flights, to confirm if there is any adjustment in the scheduled trips.

Although in principle the General Directorate of Civil Aviation had contemplated moving the aircraft between Saturday and Monday, the investigation work has not allowed it.

The plane crashed last Thursday due to failures in the left hydraulic system, according to the pilots’ report to the Control Tower.


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In addition to Civil Aviation, the manufacturer of the plane, Boeing, as well as the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are involved in investigating the plane crash.

From social media

Given that the aircraft was registered in Panama, Panamanian aviation authorities will also participate in the investigation.

On the day of the accident DHL, the German logistics company said it would also investigate the crash that resulted in the B757-200F veering off the runway and breaking in half on landing.

Read more: DHL to investigate Costa Rica cargo plane crash

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