Sion airport wins top safety status

26th August 2010, by Chris Gill

Scenic, and now extra safe,  Sion

Scenic, and now extra safe, Sion

Switzerland’s Sion airport has won a new safety certificate that gives it full international approval by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), which should help to promote and market the airport to a wider audience.

The award is given for top-level snow-clearance, plane defrosting, fire control and similar procedures. Sion is one of five Swiss airports to now hold the prestigious recognition, the others being Zurich, Geneva, Bern and St Gallen’s Altenrhein.

Despite its mountainous surroundings, the regional airport in the Rhone Valley generally handles small to medium-sized aircraft - including new charter flights from the UK introduced by Snowjet last winter; these proved a popular addition to the skiing and boarding industry, halving transfer times to resorts such as Zermatt, Saas Fee and the Four Valleys. Its location in the wide valley below Crans-Montana makes it ideal as a gateway to numerous Swiss ski areas. And the historic town provides an ideal year-round base.

Sion airport can process almost 3000 passengers a day, and increased total numbers during 2010 (just under 30,000 passengers). The airport’s deputy director Patricia Fellay commented: ‘This is important for us, as it will make it easier to attract new traffic to Sion. They will now know that landing and taking off here is as safe as anywhere.’

Snowjet plan to operate their aircraft to Sion again during 2010/11, and we would highly recommend it having enjoyed a relaxed, crowd-free and punctual flight there last season.

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