Summer air traffic requires larger planes at ECP

PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - With the expected increase in summertime travel several airlines serving Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport have announce increases in flights and now they are going to be using larger planes to handle that traffic.

Passenger traffic for the month of December had an increase of about three percent while the overall year end average registered a growth of about one percent.

Southwest and Delta will be using larger versions of aircraft now in service to handle the expected 17 percent increase in Saturday flights starting in March and continuing to the end of summer. Southwest will be using the larger version of their Boeing 737's and Delta has announce that they will be using MD-88's to handle the passenger increase.

Richard McConnell, Airport Deputy Executive Director, added, "We're going to using augmented schedules to handle the increases throughout the season. Everyone from maintenance to the airlines to TSA will be doing everything they can to do things as efficiently as they can."