Loganair chief says UK sat-nav withdrawal has led to more delays

Loganair chief executive Jonathan Hinkles has urged the UK government to re-join a European satellite navigation system – one year on from its withdrawal.

In a letter to transport minister Grant Shapps and business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, Mr Hinkles said weather cancellations on some routes had doubled since the UK left the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (Egnos) system.

Since its withdrawal, the UK has been the only G20 country without a precision satellite-based navigation system.

And Mr Hinkles said that Loganair’s routes have been subject more frequent weather cancellations and delays since.

An all-party parliamentary group has published a report calling for the UK to re-join the system.

It said it would cost the UK around £27-29 million annually to sign up to Egnos, but also highlighted its benefits to aviation safety.

The report found that the ability to safely land air ambulance flights in Scottish island airports had been impaired by the UK’s withdrawal.

“Our pilots are trained to continually re-evaluate every step and decision in the conduct of every flight, to avoid the phenomenon known as ‘press-on-itus’ – slavishly sticking by a decision even though developing circumstances clearly mandate a re-think,” Mr Hinkles wrote in his letter to ministers.

“This is a government decision which would benefit from such a re-evaluation.”


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