Orkney MSP Liam McArthur today met with Loganair’s, Jonathan Hinkles, who recently returned to the company to take up the position of Managing Director.
Top of the agenda for the meeting was again the reliability of Loganair’s services as well as the steps being taken to improve communications with passengers.
Following today’s meeting, Mr Hinkles has also agreed to the request from Mr McArthur to meet with Orkney’s ‘Air Services Key Users Group’ next month.
Commenting after the meeting, Orkney MSP Liam McArthur said:
“I am grateful to Mr Hinkles for travelling to Orkney for this meeting. It was a productive discussion and I welcome his recognition that there is a way to go before public confidence in the reliability of these air services can be restored.
“While there do appear to have been encouraging signs over recent weeks, I am clear that we need to see these improvements extended and sustained. There can be absolutely no question of a return to the chaotic scenes we saw earlier this year and last.
“Mr Hinkles also talked about his plans for improving communications with passengers, building on the existing pilot scheme, that provides passengers with email ‘alerts’. He accepted that better use could be made of text messages and social media, not just in the event of delays, but more generally. Again, this seems to be a step in the right direction.
“I believe there is also scope to develop the engineering capacity at Kirkwall and even the number of flight crew based in the islands. Mr Hinkles appeared open to this idea, which is welcome news in the longer term.
“No doubt members of the ‘Air Services Key Users Group’ will want to cover these issues in more detail with Mr Hinkles and colleagues when we meet next month. Meantime, it was an encouraging first meeting with Mr Hinkles in his new role.”