|SeaPort switching aircraft|
Passengers flying from Newport or Astoria to Portland on SeaPort Airlines will soon find the familiar Pilatus PC-12 aircraft replaced by the more economical Cessna Caravan.
SeaPort Chief Financial Officer Jim Day told the Newport-Astoria Airline Consortium last week that SeaPort has obtained a signed lease agreement on a Caravan, and it is being outfitted with a new interior.
SeaPort President Rob McKinney said he expects to have the aircraft flying the two coastal routes no later than Sept.1.
The Caravan is not pressurized nor as fast as SeaPort's flagship Pilatus aircraft, but it is cheaper to operate.
McKinney told the consortium this spring that he wanted to switch to the Caravan, saying it was vital to ensure flights from Newport and Astoria could continue after state subsidies dry up in March or April of 2011.