Air cargo: Lufthansa rolls out alternate plans to deal with ban on night flights starting next week

Faced with the prospect of not being allowed to fly its cargo planes at night, Lufthansa Cargo said earlier today it is working on contingency plans to, once the night flight ban takes effect on October 30.

By ·

Faced with the prospect of not being allowed to fly its air cargo planes at night, Lufthansa Cargo said earlier today it is working on contingency plans to, once the night flight ban takes effect on October 30.

This ban was handed down by a German regional court, according to Lufthansa, and it was issued days prior to the airline’s rollout of winter flight schedules. The carrier’s cargo flights originate out of its main hub in Frankfurt, Germany.

On a media conference call earlier today, Karl Ulrich Garnadt, Lufthansa Cargo Chairman, said that an “emergency timetable” is in place for when the ban goes live.

Among the steps outlined by Garnadt are:
-re-locating nighttime flights to daytime slots or to early and late hours of the day;
-cancelling individual connections to countries like China, with other China-bound flights stopping over Cologne/Bonn Airport for several hours after an evening departure from Frankfurt, which would continue at night; and
-at least one MD-11 freighter will be transferred from Frankfurt to Cologne/Bonn Airport and will operate the indispensable overnight flights for the German logistics industry to North America, which can no longer be guaranteed from Frankfurt due to the night-time ban.

The Lufthansa executive added that this night-flight ban has forced the carrier to “lay on a timetable,” which he deemed as economically and ecologically absurd, in that Lufthansa will be operating with unnecessary take-offs and landings which will result in more noise, higher fuel consumption, and increased cost overruns.

In terms of how much this situation is likely to cost Lufthansa, Garnadt said it is likely to be in the tens of millions range (Euros).

“We have managed at great expense to keep our customer services comparatively intact,” said Garnadt in a Reuters report. “We are currently looking at options; the combination of freight and belly in Frankfurt is so important to us. Closing the world’s seventh biggest airport for six hours each night and thereby decoupling it from the international goods flows constitutes a severe blow to the air traffic industry.”

The Reuters report added that more than half of German air freight flies out of Frankfurt and about 80 percent of Lufthansa Cargo’s global tonnage is handled in Frankfurt. And prior to the court’s decision to halt night flights, Reuters said Lufthansa’s winter schedule was planned to have around 10 or 11 of 17 landings or takeoffs available at the airport between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m.


Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
eBook: Why Multi-Tier Supplier Collaboration is More Important Now
Explore the benefits of supplier collaboration including sharing demand forecasts, faster reactions to demand or capacity changes and well-coordinated product launches.
Download Today!
From the September 2017 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
While Amazon’s recent bid to purchase Whole Foods made mainstream headlines, the e-commerce giant will still need to adhere to time-tested realities. Any way you slice it, the integrated U.S. cold chain requires optimized service from existing ports, 3PLs, cold storage warehousing, transportation providers and high-value vendors.
Improving 3PL Management: Glanbia Adds Muscle to Logistics
Why Retail Supply Chain Transformations Fail - and how to get it right
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
EDITORS' PICKS
26th Annual Study of Logistics and Transportation Trends: Transportation at Digital Speed
While a majority of companies strongly agree that transportation is a strategically important...
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: Winners Revealed
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers, and North American ports have crossed the service...

2017 Salary Survey: Fresh Voices Express Optimism
Our “33rd Annual Salary Survey” reflects more diversity entering the logistics management...
LM Exclusive: Major Modes Join E-commerce Mix
While last mile carriers receive much of the attention, the traditional modal heavyweights are in...