Winter Weather Cancels Flights Out of CHO

Posted: Updated:

Snow affected travel out of Charlottesville Albemarle Airport (CHO) Tuesday. Two flights were cancelled - one to Dulles and one to Philadelphia.

A big priority for the airport is making sure those planes can land on the runway safely. NBC29 was able to go behind the scenes to get a look at how they determine if the runway is up to par and the equipment they use to keep it that way, from plows to deicers.

Crews brought out a broom, which is the first piece equipment they use to get any precipitation down off the runway. The airport also had a public safety officer conducting braking action reports, which help CHO officials determine what the friction measurements are and establish the safe limits for an aircraft to land.

The airport also has three high-speed runway plows.

“We have a 150-foot-wide runway and 6,800 feet long, so usually about a half inch you could be out there with the plows and make a difference,” said Bill Pahuta, CHO’s deputy executive director.

Crews also de-iced planes, not so much for what was happening on the ground but so they don’t re-freeze when up in the air.

Pahuta says they will continue to monitor conditions and reports and are prepared to put down chemicals or sand to keep the conditions favorable for landing.

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