PenAir To Leave Liberal in September
Joe Denoyer - September 1, 2017 8:06 am
PenAir has announced that they will be pulling out of Liberal in September. In a letter dated yesterday, August 31, 2017, to the Department of Transportation, PenAir will cease service at Scottsbluff, Kearney, North Platte, Liberal and Dodge City after September 10, 2017. In the letter, PenAir states that due to unforseen force majeure circumstances beyond PenAir’s control and beyond it’s ability to resolve – the massive loss of pilots and PenAir’s inability to to replace them. As a result of 17 pilot resignations so far, it will be physically impossible for PenAir to continue to operate the Kansas/Nebraska flights beyond Sept. 10.
Debbie Giskie, Airport Manager for the City of Liberal stated that the process of finding a replacement air carrier is ongoing at this time. The USDOT is accepting proposals from interested carriers until September 12, 2017. Thereafter, the USDOT will review the proposals and forward them to the community for their recommendation. Once the air carrier has been selected by the USDOT, the carrier will have 90 days to begin air service at Liberal, which is estimated to be around January or February 2018.