Drop in airport passenger traffic blamed on wildfire smoke

By Vanessa Ybarra
August 17, 2017 - 5:58pm

KAMLOOPS — Wildfire smoke is being blamed for a recent drop in passenger traffic at the Kamloops Airport.

According to Manager Fred Legace, passenger traffic was down close to ten percent in July compared to July 2016.

"We saw just a little over 23-thousand people come through the terminal building last month," said Legace. "Last year the same month was about 25-thousand so it's it's about a 9.5 per cent drop off from month-to-month over the year."

While the smoke forced numerous flight cancelleations at the airport, Legace says the large volume of wildfire aircraft helped offset a revenue loss.

"We saw a really significant increase in the number of aircraft operating in support of the wildfire activity, so for us it may be close to even," said Legace. "We haven't really done an analysis at that level, but where we saw a drop off in passenger traffic we saw an increase in wildfire aircraft activity."

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