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Haiti's airport to reopen Friday

Haiti's International Airport will soon reopen to commercial aircraft carriers.  The airport was transformed into a disaster relief and military flights after the January 12th earthquake which killed  212,000 people and destroyed hundreds of buildings in the capital Port-au-Prince.

American Airlines will begin to fly to Haiti this coming Friday February 19th. Air Canada and Air France will follow shortly after that.

According to Brigadier General Darryl Burke, vice commander of Air Forces Southern, air traffic control responsibilities, which were assumed by the U.S. military following the quake, are slowly being turned over to Haitian controllers. They are currently directing flights from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will expand those hours from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. on February 19.

The quake caused serious damage to the airport's terminal. Crews have repaired airport lighting and the part of the terminal that the airlines will use.

At the peak of the disaster the airport had a capacity of 120 landings of military and relief aircraft daily. Those flights have dwindled to an average of about 70 daily in recent days, Burke said.                   (Courtesy of Reuters.)




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