The Town of Port Hedland welcomed new flight information and fire services teams - and their 30-tonne fire fighting vehicles - to Port Hedland International Airport today.
Airservices Australia will be reinstating Aerodrome Flight Information Service (AFIS) and an Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting service (ARFF) to the airport in the coming weeks.
The new services will provide airlines with directed traffic information, emergency services alerts, local weather information and advice and aviation rescue and fire fighting services.
Mayor Kelly Howlett said that the Town was pleased that Airservices Australia will be reinstating the services. "We are happy to welcome the new Aerodrome Flight Information Service and the Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting service at the Port Hedland International Airport," she said.
"In the unlikely event of an emergecy, vital first response services will be on hand within minutes.
"The airport has experienced unprecedented growth in recent years, with nearly half a million passengers annually, and we expect this growth to continue.
"We are embarking on a massive revelopment project, which will turn the facility into a modern and welcoming gateway to the Pilbara region - safety services are an essential component of our development."
Initially, the aviation rescue and fire fighting service will see two large MK8 Rosenbauer fire fighting vehicles based at an interim fire station at the airport. Airservices Australia expects to build a new fire station by mid-2014.
Airservices Australia previously operated an aviation rescue fire service at Port Hedland International Airport. In 2003, the service was withdrawn due to a decrease in passenger numbers. The reintroduction of the AFIS and ARFF services provides an added layer of safety to passengers using the facility.
For more information about the Port Hedland International Airport, please visit http://www.porthedlandairport.com.au