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Holiday travelers using Frankfurt-Hahn Airport should not have to worry about their flights being rerouted to nearby airports now that the airport’s instrument landing system is fully functioning.

Last month, hundreds of travelers using Hahn, including many U.S. servicemembers flying the discount airline Ryanair during Veterans Day weekend, had their inbound flights rerouted to nearby Saarbrücken airport because of visibility and construction-related problems at the Hahn airport.

The airport’s instrument landing system was down because of construction work to lengthen the runway at Hahn, a former U.S. military air base.

Now that the instrument landing system is fully functioning, there is less chance that flights will be rerouted, Hahn officials said.

“At the moment, everything is perfectly running,” said Nuray Güler, a spokeswoman for Hahn airport.

Roughly nine flights were diverted to nearby airports in November. Pilots were required to have 300 meters of visibility to land at Hahn without the airport’s instrument landing system. Thick fog prevented flights from landing there, so some flight were rerouted, adding hours of travel time to trips.

Army Spc. Todd Goodman was flying into Hahn on Nov. 13 when his flight was diverted to Saarbrücken.

Originally, the flight was set to land at Hahn around 11:30 p.m. After his landing at Saarbrücken and a lengthy bus ride, Goodman arrived at Hahn around 2:30 a.m. on Nov. 14.

By the time he completed the drive from Hahn to the Kaiserslautern military community, it was nearly 4 a.m.

“It was a major inconvenience,” Goodman said. “It was a stressful situation and a nightmare of a trip. It’s a relief knowing that it won’t likely happen again because it was something I don’t ever want to experience in the future.”

Even though the instrument landing system is back up and running, each pilot could still decide during bad weather to divert to another airport, Güler said.


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