Airline withdraws services to Kaduna until airport restores fire cover.

Arik Air, Nigeria’s leading commercial airline, has announced the temporary withdrawal of its flights to the airport of Kaduna, in northern Nigeria. The airline promptly took the decision this morning when it learned that the airport fire cover had fallen below minimum safety limits.
“I cannot emphasize enough that safety is our highest priority,” stressed the airline’s Managing Director Michael McTighe, in announcing the withdrawal of Arik Air’s services to Kaduna this morning. “We will not put our guests or our employees in an environment where they could be at risk.” he added.
 “While we very much regret the inconvenience that this disruption will cause our guests, we believe that they would not wish us to expose them to any risk and that they will understand the reason for our decision,” explained Mr. McTighe.
On learning of the lack of fire cover at Kaduna airport the airline reported the breach to the FAAN, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria. The provision of fire cover falls under the responsibility of airports, regulated by the FAAN. The airline says it continues to monitor the situation closely and as soon as the authorities address this issue, Arik Air will return to Kaduna and re-commence its routine operations.
Arik Air is Nigeria’s leading commercial airline. It currently operates a fleet of 27 state-of-the art regional, medium haul and long haul aircraft. The airline provides scheduled services to 19 airports across Nigeria as well as Accra (Ghana), Cotonou (Benin), Niamey (Niger) and London Heathrow (UK).
New daily non-stop flights will begin between Lagos and Johannesburg on 1 June, 2009.
The airline currently operates a combined total of 120 daily flights from its hubs in Lagos and Abuja.
It employs a workforce of 1,400.