*Kansas City, MO (AP) – October 23, 2010; 5:29p.m.Â *Over the next month, Kansas City based Metro Air Virtual AirlinesÂ is proud toÂ begin providing flights for mining companies who were integral in the successful rescue of the 33 trapped Chilean gold and copper miners. The miners were rescued lastÂ October 13th after spending ten weeks trapped nearly one half mile underground. Three Pennsylvania based companies played a vital role in reaching the miners nearly three months sooner than the original estimate of late December. Metro Air will begin providing charter services on October 22nd using the state of the art Airbus A320 between Chamonate Airport (CPO/SCHA) in Copiapo, Chile and JosÃ© JoaquÃn de Olmedo International Airport (GYE/SEGU) in Guayaquil, Ecuador. From Guayaquil, direct scheduled service to Metro Air’s Fort Lauderdale (FLL/KFLL) focus city will give these heroes the opportunity to travel to over 75 destinations world-wide. Although most will probably want to go home to Philadelphia, PA for some rest and relaxation.
Service will be provided at the request of the mining companies at the times listed below and will be available daily from October 23, 2010 until November 24, 2010. Due to runway limitations at Chamonate, passenger load will be limited to 65 passengers on the outbound flight out to Guayaquil.
The following Emerald CharterÂ flights are available for bidding. Due to MetroAir Standard Operating Procedures and minimum equipment requirements, we have had to shift operations to the newÂ Desierto de Atacama CopiapÃ³Â – SCAT/CPO.
*Departing:* Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport -Â SEGU/GYE Local: 2305 | GMT: 0405
Arriving:Â Desierto de Atacama CopiapÃ³Â – SCAT/CPO Local: 0505 | GMT: 0905
*Departing: Desierto de Atacama CopiapÃ³Â – SCAT/CPOLocal: 0520 | GMT: 0920
Arriving: Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport – SEGU / GYE Local: 0920 | GMT: 1420
*For FS2004 (FS9) users additional scenery is required for these flights as SCAT is not present in FS2004 (FS9). The scenery can be found on Flightsim.comÂ (Â http://www.flightsim.com/kdl.php?fid=103446) FSX users DO NOT need any additional scenery*
Â The three Pennsylvania based companies that requested these charters have nearly 200 years of combined experience in mine drilling techniques and technologies.Â The first mining company to arrive on the scene at the mine in Copiapo, Chile was West Chester, PA based Schramm Incorporated.Â Â When Chile’s government summoned drillers to the site in early August, nine came and four of them were using Schramm drilling rigs.Â Schramm Inc. is a global supplier to the hydraulic drill industry, focusing on land based applications.Â They specialize in mobile, top-head hydraulic rotary drilling rigs used in mining, energy, geothermal and water sectors worldwide.Â Â A Schramm T685 rig drilled the hole that located the miners, and the T130XD rig was used to drill the shaft used for their rescue.Â A forty-three member group from Schramm has been at the mine in Copiapo since August 8th providing support for the rescue effort; offering technical expertise to Chilean drilling companies operating Schrammâ€™s mobile, top-head hydraulic drills.Â Schramm plans to have direct support on the ground in Chile through the end of 2010, thereafter support will be provided by Exploration Drill Masters*Chile S.A.* , Schrammâ€™s authorized service center in Santiago, Chile.
Three days after Schramm arrived on-site in Chile; Berlin, PA based Center Rock Inc. arrived with their new four-hammer, pneumatic-based drilling system to aid in the drilling of the 12â€ pilot hole and later the 28â€ rescue shaft.Â Sixteen representatives, including CEO Brandon Fisher, were on-site in Chile to provide operational and technical support during the rescue effort.Â Center Rock will continue to provide assistance to the San Esteban Mining Company through the middle of November.
Schramm and Center Rock both requested the services of Latrobe, PA based Kennametal.Â Kennametal manufactures and supplies diamond substrates and carbide toolingÂ to mining drill operators all over the world.Â The products Kennametal supplied for the rescue effort were made to the exact specifications required to drill through the extremely hard rock surrounding the trapped miners.Â Given that these materials are mission specific, they were manufactured in record time to expedite the rescue.Â Thirty-two Kennametal employees played a direct role in the success of the operation in Chile.Â They were there not only to provide specialized support for their products, but also to provide humanitarian relief and support for those involved in the rescue effort.Â Direct assistance will continue through the first week of November, with long-term support to be provided by Kennametalâ€™s regional office in Santiago.
MetroAir is one of Americaâ€™s leading choices of airline travel, with a formidable domestic route system using a fleet of the worldâ€™s most technologically advanced Airbus airliners and with numerous regional connections through itâ€™s partner company Allegius. Originally founded in Detroit flying Boeing 737-200s and Bombardier Dash-8-Q200 feeders, MetroAir has since grown to become one of Americaâ€™s most impressive startup airlines of the last decade now operating 382 flights to 73 cities around the world using a fleet of Airbus and Bombardier airliners.Â Built on a simple home-grown attitude of quick and affordably-efficient service, MetroAir has seen a groundswell of critical acclaim from the flying public in response to a return of service to the days of old.
In an economy where passengers have dozens of choices to choose from, MetroAir provides an affordable ticket in a comfortable seat, in-flight entertainment, warm meals and drinksâ€”paid for, and not through creative trickery.Â Sure itâ€™s a stretch on the airlineâ€™s tight budget, but MetroAir prides itself on integrity to the flying public and delivers on promises made.
Virtually speaking, MetroAir was built and is operated entirely on realismâ€”aircraft are purchased, routes are operated, and growth is measured within the boundaries of what realism would economically dictate.Â Come fly for MetroAir, where youâ€™re contributions play a direct role in the airlineâ€™s growth and success!