New terminal threatens Dallas Love Field delay statistics
Dallas Love Field Airport (DAL) is situated six miles to the northwest of Dallas, Texas. Over seven million passengers use the facility each year, although this is due to rise considerably as the new terminal comes on stream. This project will add a new concourse with an additional 20 gates. Dallas Love Field Airport owes its name to Moss L Love, who was tragically the tenth aviator to die in the newly formed U.S. Army Air Corps in 1913, when his Wright biplane crashed during practise. The naming ceremony took place in October 1917 when the airfield was opened as a training ground for new pilots, one of 32 such airfields, and home to the 136th Aero Squadron. New runways were added in 1943 but the air force ceased to use the facilities after WW2 and it was taken over as a civilian airport. A fatal air accident involving an American Airlines Douglas DC6 took place in 1949 as the crew lost control of the plane as it came in to land, with the loss of 28 lives, leading to a series of flight delays and cancelations. This was the biggest loss in Texas history at the time and remains the worst accident at the airport to this day. It was at Love Field Airport that President John F Kennedy arrived in 1963 on Air Force One, prior to his assassination, and where Lyndon B Johnson was sworn in, on the same plane before it took off again.
Departure delay statistics and popular destinations
Dallas Love Field is primarily used by Southwest Airlines and then ExpressJet, with a few flights by SeaPort, NetJets and United Airlines arriving and departing from the airport.
While ExpressJet has an enviable 100% record for avoiding delays and cancellations, Southwest who fly more frequently, is achieving only 95% for arrivals and 91% for departures, with the remainder suffering from some degree of delay. This means that a considerable number of passengers have cause to apply for compensation as is their right to claim for delayed services. The most popular destinations are Houston (Hobby) (HOU), San Antonio (SAT), Austin (ASQ), Kansas City (MCI) and Lambert St Louis (STL).
New terminal means more flights and possible delays
The brand new terminal 2 at Dallas love field will add an additional 20 gates to the current facilities. Most of these have been allocated to Southwest airlines, 16 in all, with the remainder going to Delta, United and 2 still to be decided between Delta, Southwest and Virgin America. This has come about as the Wright Amendment ceases to have an effect in 2014. This ruling had previously limited flights and the number of gates that were permitted. Up until now the airport has held a very good record for a lack of flight delays and cancellations. However, as the amount of traffic is now set to increase so does the likelihood that this record will be challenged, especially as delays and cancellations at other airports will have a knock on effect, leading to passenger claims for their rights for compensation for poorly performing services.