Airlines add flights


CHINESE airline companies put on additional flights to Japan yesterday in the wake of the government’s decision to evacuate Chinese citizens from areas worst hit by earthquake and tsunami and affected by nuclear leak.

China Southern Airlines operate 30 flights between Japan and China carrying 2,324 Chinese nationals back to China yesterday.

The airline’s Dalian company has replaced its smaller aircraft with the 178-seater Airbus-321 on the Dalian-Nagoya route to meet the surging evacuation demands, a statement of the company said yesterday. The company had put on an additional flight daily from Dalian to Nagoya from March 15 to 21.

The Dalian-Nagoya flight takes off at 8:05 a.m. and the return flight departs Nagoya at 12:15 p.m. Beijing time. On busier Shenyang-Tokyo route, China Southern uses the 272-seater Airbus-300. The Shenyang-Tokyo route was resumed Tuesday, four days after flights were canceled following the 9.0-magnitude earthquake struck off Japan’s northeast coast and triggered tsunami.

The newly-added flight CZ2001/ to Niigata will depart from Harbin at 2 p.m. and return from Niigata at 7 p.m. with 157 passengers. The company replaced B777B plane with B777A, which has 90 more seats to transport Chinese nationals from Tokyo to Guangzhou, The plane arrives at Guangzhou at 8 p.m.

The Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines sent an additional passenger flight, Airbus 340-300, yesterday to Niigata Airport, where about 2,000 Chinese nationals are waiting to return to China. China Eastern has four flights between Shanghai and Niigata every week.

Meanwhile, Air China, the country’s flag carrier, said Tuesday that it had cancelled a limited number of flights to Japan, mainly

due to the operational capacity of some airports there.

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