Airport up and running

Airlines see drop in number of passengers

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— Flights at the Yampa Valley Regional Airport returned to a normal pattern over the weekend as many travelers coming to and leaving from Routt County finally found flights home after the shutdown of all flights in the United States. But reports say that air travel at the airport was down since the planes began landing again.

"There has been a decrease in passengers," Air Wisconsin supervisor Carol Ficker said.

None of flights out of the airport on Sunday were full. But Ficker added it is not certain if the decrease at the airport so far is because of schedule issues or the unwillingness to travel following Tuesday's terrorist attacks.

Air Wisconsin, which is managing Great Lakes Aviation flights at the airport until December, had six flights arriving and departing Sunday. Plane traffic slowly started up on Friday with one flight and now is running business as usual, aside from the extra security precautions being taken, Ficker said.

Passengers are now being asked to arrive to the airport about an hour and a half before they would board their flight.

Joan Caraway was waiting Sunday for a 10:10 a.m. flight to arrive, which is the first leg of her trip home to Tucson, Ariz. Her visit to her son, who lives near Clark, was extended because her Sept. 11 flight was canceled.

Caraway said she called everyday since, and Sunday's flight was the first she could get. The flight was delayed about an hour because of weather, but Caraway said she is now used to waiting for airplanes. She also said she is little nervous about plane travel.

"I don't like it there are too many idiots out there," she said.

Janeil Stalcar of Craig was waiting for the same plane, but she was at the airport to pick up her grandma, who was arriving on the late 10:10 a.m. flight.

"She was supposed to come in on Friday," Stalcar said.

When the plane arrived, two passengers came off the 19-seat plane, one being Stalcar's grandma, Louise Fedinec.

Fedinec, who was in Chicago when terrorists attacked New York and Washington, D.C., was glad to be home. She commented that the Sears Tower in Chicago was closed for fear that it could be hit by another attack.

"The Colorado soil never looked better," she said.

Fedinec said that it wasn't too busy at the airports in Chicago and Denver but added she was there early in the morning.

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