On Saturday November 2, 2013, the Prescott Municipal Airport/Ernest A. Love Field was presented with the prestigious 2013 Airport Safety Award at the 41st Annual Safety Awards Banquet. This award, given to an airport that has made considerable strides in enhancing safety and efficiency, was presented to the City of Prescott on behalf of the Aviation Safety Advisory Group of Arizona and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Safety Team.
“It is an honor for the City of Prescott to be recognized for our efforts to enhance the safety of the airport and its facilities,” said Jeff Tripp, Airport Manager. In order to receive the award, an airport must be a public use airport facility in Arizona and be judged on its specific contributions, whether they be procedural or physical improvements to increase aviation and aircraft safety.
The major airport safety accomplishment during the past year has been the completion of the $11.3 million project to improve the runway safety area for the airport’s primary runway. This project shifted the primary runway 400 feet to the northeast to achieve compliance with the FAA’s 1,000-foot Extended Runway Safety Area requirement. The project also shifted portions of the parallel taxiways; installed an underground storm drain system paralleling the main runway; installed new LED taxiway lights along taxiway D; re-graded the safety areas between Runway 3R/21L and parallel taxiways C & D; and installed a replacement Instrument Landing System.
“This award is ultimately the result of close coordination and teamwork between airport staff, the FAA air traffic control tower, airport users, construction personnel and project engineering personnel,” said Tripp. “This award is also a reflection of the commitment to the culture of safety that occurred throughout the construction phase of the project, which included both daytime and nighttime work.”
Ernest A. Love Field is owned and operated by the City of Prescott. The Airport supports an estimated 700 jobs and generates $69 million to the local economy each year. In 2012, the Airport experienced 252,000 take-offs and landings, making it the 37th busiest airport in the country and the third busiest in the state. In 2012, over 5,000 passengers used the airport to connect to flights in Los Angeles and Denver through Great Lakes Airline.
A large percentage of this activity is generated by flight training conducted by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Guidance Aviation, North-Aire, and Universal Helicopters. Other activities include recreational aviation, scheduled airline service, corporate aviation, business aviation, and military operations. The community benefits of these activities include medical flights, search & rescue flights, law enforcement, and U.S. Forest Service aerial firefighting operations during the summer months.