03 November 2012

Eagle PR

Eagle Air's Carrie Hurihanganui has been busy smoothing ruffled feathers in recent days in the provinces over the last week. The Timaru Herald and Wairarapa Times-Age have carried accounts of her visits...


Rumours surrounding Eagle Air's future services have been "put to bed" by general manager Carrie Hurihanganui. Mrs Hurihanganui met councillors, customers and industry leaders in Timaru this week to thank them for their perseverance and to answer questions surrounding the airline's turbulent year. Eagle Air flights to and from Timaru were disrupted in August after hairline cracks were found in the tail area of one of the planes during a routine maintenance check. The airline's fleet of Beech 19ooD aircraft were grounded as a result, disrupting travel throughout the country for five to six weeks. Weather has also disrupted flights to and from Timaru in more recent months, she said. However, she is unsure exactly how many cancellations there had been to the service since the discovery of hairline cracks. She said clearing up the rumours that had circulated about the future of services was one of the reasons for her visit to Timaru this week. "One was that people thought that some of the disruption meant we were looking at moving ourselves from Timaru, but [we are] absolutely not." Another rumour was that Eagle Air was favouring other routes against Timaru. However, the company does not "trade off" routes, she said. "We look for a solution that minimises disruption to all of our customers. All of our ports were affected [by the hairline crack discovery] in one way or another. "We don't trade off Timaru - it's a valuable market." Mrs Hurihanganui said although the visit was brought on by the company's troubled few months, the response from the people she met with had been positive. "Customers have said [the resumed service] has been great and that's where it needs to be. "I apologise for the disruption there's been, but in regards to safety, that's always non-negotiable for us." She said many customers she had met with applauded Eagle Air's approach to safety, despite not being happy that they had missed important meetings. Mrs Hurihanganui will meet with Aoraki Development Business and Tourism chief executive Wendy Smith and mayor Janie Annear every three months to keep the lines of communication open. Mrs Annear said she appreciated Mrs Hurihanganui's visit, which gave councillors a chance to express how valuable the Eagle Air service is to the community. Mrs Smith also found the meeting valuable. "We think it's really positive, and we've got an ongoing commitment with Carrie to keep meeting and discussing the issues."

Eagle Air management was in Masterton this week to assure its regular travellers that it's here for the long haul. General manager Carrie Hurihanganui told an audience at the Copthorne Hotel & Resort Solway Park, Masterton, on Monday night that despite recent challenges, the company had no intention of cutting its service. The Eagle Air Masterton to Auckland service runs six times per week and in recent months has cancelled several services. Ms Hurihanganui acknowledged there had been a reasonable amount of flight disruption, particularly in August when a hairline crack was found in one of its Beech 1900D aircraft and it grounded all 18 in its fleet. The company will always be conservative around safety, she said. After the cancellations some Masterton travellers thought it was "the beginning of the end of our service in Masterton", she said but this was not the case.

Source : http://www.times-age.co.nz/news/eagle-air-service-here-for-the-long-haul/1605296/

No comments:

Post a Comment