Fri 9th Dec 2016
SVG Green Party Leader, Ivan O’Neal and Kadmiel McFee did a fact-finding walk on Friday 2 November 2016, around the perimeter of the Argyle airport. It is apparent that Argyle Airport is in heavy swamp area, and this is a flight safety hazard, and also, Argyle will be very costly when it comes to maintenance.
The area is continuously waterlogged and consequently, there is a significant amount of water under the Argyle airport that compromises the integrity of the runway. The idea is for jumbo jets to land at Argyle, but the 400 tonne weight of a jumbo jet would break up the runway and cause it to sink, as there is so much water under the runway.
The integrity of the runway could never be guaranteed under the weight of a 400 tonne jumbo jet for every landing and take-off. This is a major flight safety hazard and could cause a passenger aircraft accident.
There is a heavy flow of rain water from the hills and valleys all around the Argyle airport. When it rains, there is heavy flood of water and mud that flows down toward the runway and the buildings of the airport.
The airport’s buildings and runway have been cut too low down, compared to the surrounding hills and valleys, and when it rains they are swamped with mud and water. This is a serious concern and means that lots of money will have to be wasted constantly clearing away the water and mud that regularly inundates the runway and buildings. See photo.
The maintenance costs alone for Argyle airport will be unsustainably high. Even when there is no rain, water still comes out of the hills flowing in to the airport site.
The collapse of the bridge with thick concrete walls on the old Argyle road, situated only a few yards below the Argyle airport runway perimeter fence, is a strong warning that the impact of sea water and heavy rain water can cause significant damage to the runway and the perimeter, resulting in high maintenance costs.
The SVG Treasury does not have the revenue for the high maintenance cost of Argyle airport.
The bridge collapse begs the question ‘how safe is the Argyle airport runway’ which was foolishly built in the path of heavy flood water.
The sinking for the second time of the by-pass road, not far from the air traffic control tower, is evidence that heavy flood water is running under the surface. This has caused that section of the by-pass road to sink for the second time and will result in high maintenance costs. See photo.
The main emphasis of building Argyle airport was to get jumbo jets flying to SVG. It is highly unlikely that Argyle airport will see jumbo jets any time soon. There are too many flight safety hazards and SVG lacks the medical facilities necessary to deal with a jumbo jet accident and the number people that would need injuries treated.
To date, there has been no public disclosure of the important usability factor of the Argyle airport.
Argyle airport will not work for jumbo jets. It should be aborted and the airport site used as a wind farm estate and industrial estate. SVG needs a constant flow of clean, renewable energy in this age of climate change and an industrial estate will be good for small business development and job creation.