CHO Airport: The Big Dig!

January 29th, 2016

Some people called it Snowzilla. Some people called it Winter Storm Jonas. Some people just called it a lot of snow. Regardless of what name you bestowed upon it, there’s no denying the fact that central Virginia just received a tremendous dumping of snow. CHO Airport was not spared from this wintry assault from Mother Nature, which included nearly 19” of snow, whipping winds, and bone-chilling temperatures. The airlines halted service at CHO Airport beginning Friday morning and didn’t resume until early Sunday afternoon. Even though there were no planes taking off or landing at the airport during the storm, the airport was far from quiet during that time frame. In fact, it was buzzing with activity! Our snow removal team was hard at work digging, plowing, and scraping the runway, taxiway, stairs, sidewalks, parking lots, and nearly every other surface you can imagine to get operations back up and running as quickly as possible – and it’s no easy feat!DSC_0486

It takes an entire team of people working around the clock to remove these mammoth amounts of snow from CHO Airport. This dedicated team was out there in the elements, braving the cold and snow so airport operations could resume shortly after the last flake fell. And when you’re talking about removing a foot and a half of snow from a runway that measures 6,800 feet in length, it requires some BIG pieces of machinery!

Snow plows equipped with 22-foot blades were out in full force, along with front-end loaders, and snowblowers capable of whisking snow off of critical airport surfaces. To take care of parking areas, steps, and sidewalks, the equipment is a bit scaled down in size, but the end result is the same – to remove the snow as quickly as possible to get the airport back up and running!DSC_0204

Thanks to the herculean efforts of this dedicated staff of workers, CHO Airport resumed commercial air service on Sunday and the terminal slowly started coming back to life as passengers began filtering back through the doors. While snowstorms may be an inevitable part of winter in Charlottesville, know that you can always count on the team here at CHO Airport to make fast work of the snow to get you up in the air and off to your destination! DSC_0566On the bright side, it does make for some great photo opportunities. Those snow-covered mountains in the distance sure do look beautiful! But if snow just isn’t your thing, don’t fret – spring is only about 6 weeks away!