Usually, Milwaukee's General Mitchell International Airport (MKE) is a hub that hums calmly with news, rather than emitting a loud news buzz.
On June 3, various news media, including JSOnline and the Associated Press, reported a Frontier Airlines flight arriving at Mitchell Airport from Phoenix that afternoon, was evacuated after an unidentfied white powder had been noticed by a flight attendant in one of the lavatories, just before the on-schedule landing.
A Frontier spokeswoman, answering questions for this Examiner about the incident by phone, described a routine deplaning at the gate, rather than an evacuation, and stated that probably few of the exiting passengers had any idea a hazardous materials crew boarded the aircraft to investigate the substance immediately afterwards. The white powder was later determined to be a commonly used sweeter, she said.
On June 6, this Examiner reported that passengers did use the aircraft's stairs to deplane at the runway from a SkyWest regional jet operating Delta Flight 4443, after a safe, gear-up emergency landing occurred at 9:32 p.m., and were bused to the terminal. This accident closed the airport for nearly two hours while the plane was removed from the scene, because construction was in progress on the other runway used by commercial flights.
A financial analyst, writing for the website FindingAlpha.com, claimed Frontier Airlines' corporate parent Republic, overall one of the busiest airline operators at Mitchell Airport (with regional services there, in addition to its Frontier name-brand), is in dire, but not yet hopeless, financial trouble, because of rising fuel costs and greater competition with Southwest's recently purchased subsidiary AirTran.
Republic recently agreed to concessions for Frontier's pilots, and has begun restructuring the Frontier's ownership to gain liquidity, this Examiner reported. Reuters reported the company also has committed itself to the purchase of 80 more Airbus A320 and A319 planes.
According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, a $2,967,000 project that Governor Scott Walker approved this month to restructure the taxiway near Runway 7R/25 will begin soon, and is expected to be completed this fall.
Environmental organizations and businesses are planning "green" projects to improve the Milwaukee airport neighborhood this year, The Business Journal reported last week.