Calls for more use to be made of Cork Airport following chaos in Dublin as over 1,000 miss flights

“People like using Cork Airport because it’s the exact opposite to Dublin Airport." 
Calls for more use to be made of Cork Airport following chaos in Dublin as over 1,000 miss flights

Long snaking queues for Departures at Terminal 2, Dublin Airport this morning. Picture: Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

Latest:

More than 1,000 passengers missed flights from Dublin Airport yesterday.

Speaking on RTE's Morning Ireland, the Head of Communications for airport operator daa said lengthy queues meant "well over 1,000 passengers" missed their flights at Dublin Airport yesterday.

Kevin Cullinane also apologised to passengers.

"Certainly at this stage, it’s well over 1,000 passengers, and we unreservedly apologise," he said.

Asked how many many missing their flights, Mr Cullinane said: "At this stage we estimate over 1,000 passengers ... we will be doing a final tally with all our airline partners and customers again this morning to ascertain the final number".

Earlier:

CALLS have been made for more flights to be moved to Cork and other regional airports in the long-term after lengthy queues caused major disruption for passengers at Dublin Airport.

Cork Business Association president Kevin Herlihy made his remarks as Dublin Airport admitted that mistakes were made after it was forced to warn passengers that some could miss flights due to lengthy queues.

“Long-term, I think it would be a great idea if the daa, which also has responsibility for Cork Airport, could look at rescheduling some of the flights to and from Dublin Airport to Cork,” Mr Herlihy said.

“1.2m people live in Munster. Dublin Airport is at over-capacity and they appear to be having massive staffing issues, while Cork Airport is at under-capacity.

“From an outsider’s perspective, it just seems to be common sense that some of the flights in and out of Dublin be moved to Cork or Shannon or Knock or Farranfore,” he said.

Echoing Mr Herlihy’s comments, Cork City Independent councillor Mick Finn said the daa needed to start looking at alternative airports to Dublin.

“We have capacity here in Cork, it’s a small airport,” Mr Finn said. “People like using Cork Airport because it’s the exact opposite to Dublin Airport.

“It’s the polar opposite because it’s quiet, you can navigate through it quickly, and surely if the daa can look at rerouting some of the flights out of Dublin it would mean that people wouldn’t be queuing for hours.”

An urgent meeting will take place today between Dublin Airport officials and Hildegarde Naughton, the junior minister for transport, to discuss the issue.

Fears for long weekend 

Concern is growing ahead of the bank holiday weekend in several days’ time, as both the Taoiseach and the transport minister, Eamon Ryan, asked for answers about the disorder at the airport.

Dublin Airport, which is the country’s main airport, had earlier warned of “significant queues” for passengers.

Officials have pledged to try to compensate all passengers who had missed flights or had their plans disrupted if additional costs were incurred.

An Taoiseach Micheál Martin, speaking from Lebanon, said the situation was “not satisfactory”.

“The minister will be engaging with them and Government will be discussing this and reviewing this in terms of the huge numbers and the delays and so on,” Mr Martin said.

“It’s not satisfactory.”

In a statement, the Department of Transport said Mr Ryan and Ms Naughton had “expressed deep unhappiness” over the scenes at the airport.

Kevin Cullinane, the group head of communications for daa, admitted they had got things “wrong” on Sunday.

“Significantly, we did not have sufficient staff manning sufficient posts throughout the airport to cope with demand early on and hence queues built up,” Mr Cullinane told RTÉ radio.

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