USVI’s Hummingbird Air About To Suspend Operations

ST CROIX, US Virgin Islands, Friday March 17, 2017 – The St Croix-based Hummingbird Air will put the brakes of flights at the end of the month.

But it could soar again under new management.

The airline’s managing director Samuel Raphael informed customers in a March 14 letter that negotiations are underway with a new management group to take over the carrier’s operations.

“We recognize that aviation options are limited and had hoped for a seamless management changeover. However, due to a number of factors we have decided to suspend service at the end of this month,” he wrote.

Raphael had also told Dominica News Online that the major contributing factor for the suspension was that airport fees in the USVI were raised dramatically last month.

Hummingbird Air operates regular passenger and cargo flights from its base at St. Croix Henry E. Rohlsen to each of Basseterre and Dominica Douglas-Charles.

The airline has informed customers of its SHOPNET service — which allows residents of Dominica and St Kitts and Nevis to make online purchases and route them through the carrier — to ensure that their final orders are registered no later than March 25 to guarantee delivery.

The suspension in operations comes more than a year after Hummingbird Air experienced two crash landings.

In August 2015, a plane veered off the runway in Barbuda and crashed into a nearby field, with five passengers on board, including Raphael. Three months later, one of the airline’s 15-seater aircraft veered off the runway upon landing at the George FL Charles Airport in Castries, St. Lucia.

No one was injured in either incident.

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