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Group calls for new Trislanders to be built

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ALDERNEY'S Trislander Pressure Group has urged the States of Guernsey to reject the Aurigny budget of 'open ended structural losses' forecast for when an all-Dornier fleet serves the island's routes.

The Guernsey Budget Report for 2017 estimates that Aurigny will lose £1.7m. on Alderney routes per year when the remaining three Trislanders are phased out.

A new Dornier 228 is expected to arrive next summer, joining another new one and two second-hand ones. They are expected to be converted to form a composite second-hand Dornier.

Originally it was anticipated by Aurigny that an all-Dornier fleet would save the airline £100,000 a year on an annual loss of £900,000 when the island was being served by Trislanders.

The Trislander Pressure Group wants the States to abandon its Dornier replacement programme and instead commission manufacturer Britten-Norman to build five new Trislanders for £13.3m.

Each new Dornier costs around £6m.

In a statement to Guernsey deputies, the group said: 'In May 2014 Guernsey deputies were persuaded to approve the disastrous Dornier acquisition programme on the basis of information that was incomplete, inaccurate, misleading and fundamentally flawed.

'As a result, Aurigny will have spent £16-18m. by mid-2017 and have only two Dorniers in service. Recent operations have clearly demonstrated that the Alderney routes cannot be run satisfactorily on this basis.'

The Trislander Pressure Group maintains that Trislanders represent the cheaper and most suitable aircraft for Alderney – despite the fact that Britten-Norman has not produced the model for more than 30 years.

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