Aircraft flying between Taiwan, remote islands to be upgraded

Daily Air, the carrier operating domestic flights to remote islands from Taiwan proper, will upgrade its fleet at the end of the month to improve and expand services for residents of those locations, the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) said.

The agency said in a statement released on Oct. 14 that the private air company, which holds a 10-year permit from the CAA to operate domestic flight services to remote islands until 2025, has added four new 19-seat Canada DHC6-400 airplanes to its fleet.

The new planes will replace the fleet's aging Dornier 228, which currently fly to Orchid Island and Green Island off Taitung, as well as Qimei, one of the Penghu Islands in the Taiwan Strait, the CAA said.

Two of the new planes are already in service and from Oct. 31 all Daily Air flights to remote islands (between Taitung-Orchid Island, Taitung-Green Island, Kaohsiung-Qimei, Kaohsiung-Wan'an and Magong- Qimei) will be flown by the new DHC6-400s, the agency said.

Thanks to the new aircraft, the number of flights between Taitung and Orchid Island will increase to six round trips every day, with three a day between Taitung and Green Island and two a day between Kaohsiung and Qimei, the CAA said.

Owing to terrain, runway length and changeable weather conditions, few types of aircraft are able to fly to Taiwan's remote islands. For many years, the CAA has helped maintain commercial fights to those islands by offering subsidies to the air carrier authorized to fly the routes to serve local residents.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel