KUCB KIAL Unalaska Community Broadcasting

PENAIR

Chrissy Roes

After four days of cancellations, Unalaska’s passenger flights resumed Saturday when the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) finally completed its inspection of a navigational beacon at the airport.  

PenAir grounded all of its flights last Tuesday after the beacon’s safety certification expired.

Now, the airline has returned to its normal flight schedule — and moved almost 170 people who’d been stranded.

Berett Wilber/KUCB

Almost 170 passengers are stranded as Unalaska endures its fourth day of canceled flights.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) official said the airport’s non-directional radio beacon was “fixed” Thursday by an on-the-ground team.

But now, a flight crew — which has to check the navigational equipment from the air — has been delayed in Anchorage.

“Crew and aircraft are in position to promptly check this navigational aid when the weather at Dutch Harbor permits,” said Allen Kenitzer of the FAA’s Office of Communications in a statement.

Pipa Escalante/KUCB

Updated 2/8/18 at 12:30 p.m. 

Unalaska is facing its third day of flight cancellations.

On Tuesday, the problem was weather. But since then, the trouble has stemmed from a navigational beacon at the airport.

"For whatever reason, that piece of equipment expired before it was re-certified," said Missy Roberts of PenAir, Unalaska’s only carrier with flights to and from Anchorage.

Berett Wilber/KUCB

This year Ravn Alaska will start flying new routes in southwest Alaska, but at this point there’s no indication they’ll add legs to Unalaska.

Courtesy of Nate Julian

PenAir has narrowed down the cause of an engine failure that forced one of airplanes to make an emergency landing in Sand Point earlier this month.

“The engine appears to have suffered from a compressor stall,” or a disruption to the turbine’s airflow, according to spokesperson Missy Roberts. 

The reason behind that disruption is still unclear.

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