Tour Company Sues CNMI Authority

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Related to suspension of flights in August

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, November 14, 2015) – The Commonwealth Ports Authority in the Northern Marianas is being sued by a tour company for close to $US150,000 in expenses it incurred after the airport on Saipan was closed to wide-body aircraft due to the unavailability of a fire and rescue truck

Century Tours Incorporated is suing the Ports Authority over the suspension of flights on the 21st of August that stranded many tourists on Saipan.

It says the Authority's negligence and carelessness cost the company over $US149,000 (149,044) in expenses paid on behalf of the stranded tourists.

According to Marianas Visitors Authority and airport officials, 1,600 passengers were stranded that weekend because of the incident.

The airport returned to normal operations four days later, after the Authority expedited the shipment of a steering gear box from a manufacturer out of Wisconsin.

Federal Aviation Administration regulations require commercial airports to be ready to respond to aircraft incidents and accidents, fires, and hazardous materials incidents.

A working fire truck also needs to be on site.

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