20 March 2020
By Bryan Smyth
Across the globe, the aviation industry is facing its biggest peacetime challenge
The Irish Department of Foreign Affairs also has specific ‘Do Not Travel’ notices for Italy and other countries including Afghanistan, Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Meanwhile, due to social distancing recommendations, public transport of all kinds (planes, busses etc) are being avoided by passengers.
The net result is Airports are now very quiet places. While the passengers may be avoiding the tarmac the planes that brought them to remain in situ. Globally many airports are running out of space to park aircraft, and are using shorter runways as parking zones.
Cork Airport has two runways. The larger runway known as 34/16 will remain open, this main 2,133m (6,998ft) runway of asphalt run approximately North-South. However, it’s understood that the shorter runway known as 07/25 which is 1,310m (4,298ft) will be repurposed into a parking area for disused Airplanes.
Precedent for using runways for parking
When the Boeing 737 MAX was grounded airlines flew the MAX to lesser used airports for parking, so by utilising unnecessary runways aviation firms globally could alleviate to relocate planes. The manufacturer also used carparks to store planes! as seen in the video below from 2019