Written answers

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport

Military Aircraft Landings

Photo of Clare DalyClare Daly (Dublin North, United Left)
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617. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of US troops that passed through Shannon Airport in 2014, including the monthly breakdown; the number of requests his Department received in 2014 from civilian aircraft to land at Shannon Airport or pass through Irish airspace while carrying munitions; the number of permits issued for both; the numbers of requests that were rejected; the reasons for rejecting the requests for which permits were not granted; and if he will provide the breakdown of the countries from which the requests were made and the permits were granted. [2791/15]

Photo of Paschal DonohoePaschal Donohoe (Dublin Central, Fine Gael)
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Shannon Airport Authority has informed my Department that the number of US troops that passed through Shannon Airport in 2014 was 55,405.  The monthly breakdown is as follows:

Monthly BreakdownMonthly Breakdown
January - 5609July - 7016
February - 3678  August - 5078
March - 3332September - 4476
April - 5260  October - 7076
May - 3506 November - 5027
June - 2881  December - 2466

Exemptions for the carriage of munitions of war on civil aircraft are issued by the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport under the Air Navigation (Carriage of Munitions of War, Weapons and Dangerous Goods) Order, 1973, as amended. The majority of exemptions issued in recent years are in respect of the unloaded personal weapons of troops travelling on civil aircraft that are refuelling at Irish airports. In common with most other jurisdictions and in accordance with the Chicago Convention, civil aircraft making technical stops (such as a refuelling stop) at Irish airports do not require authorisation.

My Department received 606 applications for such exemptions in 2014. Most of these relate to foreign civil aircraft landing in Ireland or passing through Irish airspace. However, a small number relate to Irish registered aircraft operating in Ireland or overseas. Of these 606, 584 permits were issued, three were withdrawn and 19 were refused.  The refusals were on the basis of the advice of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Requests came from airlines from the USA, Poland, Ireland, Turkey, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Russia, Netherlands and Spain.The vast majority of the requests came the USA.


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