Sunday, May 11, 2014

Too Bad This Plane Isn't Coming To Vegas

File:1er vol de l' A380.jpg
From the LVRJ: It’s the largest commercial passenger aircraft ever built, and it’s big enough to produce massive logistical headaches to airport managers worldwide.
The Airbus Industries A380 superjumbo jet can carry up to 555 passengers in a traditional three-class configuration. Make the entire plane economy class, and it can hold as many as 853 people.
The plane, which weighs 305 tons empty and first became a part of airline fleets in 2007, has two decks of passenger seating the entire length of the aircraft.
Some airlines equip their A380s with lie-flat seats, suites, lounges and beauty salons to emphasize their comfort....
The discussion got new life recently when reports surfaced that Korean Air was considering flying A380s on its Seoul-to-Las Vegas route. Korean Air already flies wide-bodied Boeing 777s between Seoul and Las Vegas. The story making the rounds was that Korean was going to establish a partnership with Southwest Airlines to transport Asian customers through Southwest’s network and that Southwest customers could connect seamlessly to Asia on Korean’s network....
McCarran officials say not only has Korean not made a request, but no airline has asked to fly an A380 here.
“These kinds of things come up once in a while,” said Clark County Aviation Director Rosemary Vassiliadis in an interview. “You’ll hear that we’ve denied allowing them. The fact is no airline has even approached us about it.”
Not that McCarran would necessarily allow one if asked. Vassiliadis said the airport would have to consider a number of factors before green-lighting flights to the Las Vegas airport.
Among those considerations would be how the airport would manage the jet’s movements on the field once it arrived, where it would park and what day and time it would arrive and depart....
The biggest problem in bringing an A380 to McCarran would be what to do with it once it gets on the ground.
McCarran has more than enough runway length for the plane to land and take off. At 14,512 feet — the third longest serving commercial carriers in the United States — McCarran’s runway routinely accommodates big jets.
One of McCarran’s E gates at Terminal 3 is adequate for loading and unloading passengers from an A380, but it could take awhile....
The biggest problem at McCarran is that the taxi strips leading to the gates are too close to each other for safe clearance with other planes...
“These types of planes have wingspans so wide that, when taxiing, they can intrude onto other taxiways and into some runway safety areas,” said Ian Gregor, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration. “But there are ways around the problem.”
Gregor said the A380 wheelbase is so long that it’s difficult for the planes to turn on tight taxiways and the wheels could accidentally crush lights along the side of the pavement.
I love watching airplanes take off and land at McCarren, especially the big planes, like the 747 and DC 10.
It would be nice to watch the A380 take off and land and just marvel how something so big and so heavy can land and take off.
Too bad it isn't coming to Las Vegas.

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