Modification of wind standards for Brussels airport

BELGA Published on Sunday 06 July 2014 at 18:32 – Last updated on Sunday 06 July 2014 at 18:34

In a press release issued on Sunday, the Belgian Union against Aircraft Nuisance (UBCNA) accused the Secretary of State for Mobility, Melchior Wathelet (cdH), of having discreetly modified the wind standards for Brussels airport, and of having “lied” to Parliament. According to the association, which relies on aeronautical publications amended in May 2014, Mr. Wathelet did indeed modify wind standards, including the notion of gusts up to 12 knots. According to UBCNA, the centrist Secretary of State had asserted the opposite earlier this year before the Federal Parliament.

“Mr Wathelet has therefore lowered the standard from 12 knots including gusts to a maximum of 7 knots including gusts, which means that gusts, no matter how small, but as soon as they exceed 7 knots, even for a moment, are now taken into account to change the runways,” charges UBCNA.

“This therefore explains why runway 01 has once again been used enormously in recent weeks, 25% of them in June 2014, since the values of the wind standards that determine runway usage have once again been modified and lowered.”

According to the association, this change in wind standards, which was made “without any agreement from the government”, leads to “a considerable increase in the size of runway 01”, which violates the ruling of the Brussels Court of Appeal of March 2005, which prohibits any excessive, illicit or abusive use of runway 01, recalls the organization, which speaks of a “purely political maneuver” by the Secretary of State.

“Mr. Wathelet, his cabinet and his administration have once again shown that they are staunch supporters of the excessive development of traffic at Brussels Airport, and that they have no consideration for the residents of Brussels or for the environmental management of air traffic”, concludes the association’s press release.

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