The population of Puerto Rico are still in need of basic essentials after the onslaught of Hurricane Maria.
An MD 11 Lufthansa Cargo Aircraft is flying out 70 tons of drinking water and over 10 tonnes of foodstuffs and apparel to the Caribbean Island.
Lufthansa Group deployed an MD 11 Cargo Aircraft from Frankfurt Airport to Aguadilla, on the West Coast of Puerto Rico. Situated in this region is a Lufthansa Technical Site where 400 colleagues, residing in the local communities nearby, are still suffering from the devastating effects of Hurricane Maria. Lufthansa Group is determined to bring supplies to this region in order to join the humanitarian efforts throughout the island.
The Lufthansa Cargo McDonnell Douglas MD 11 Aircraft departed today under the Flight Number LH8830 from Frankfurt Airport, Germany at 20:40h Central European Time. After a refueling stopover at Atlanta Airport, the Flight will proceed to Rafael Hernández International Airport in Puerto Rico. It is scheduled to arrive there on Sunday, 07:20h local time.
The Lufthansa Cargo Aircraft is loaded with 80 tons of drinking water, apparel, food provisions and hygienic supplies – in fact, a combination of the items desperately needed at the location. The Lufthansa Group is working closely with the local U.S. Authorities there to obtain the necessary coordination and support for this comprehensive relief-aid operation. In Germany, participants of this relief effort have predominantly been: Hassia, the Metro Group, as well as LSG Skychefs with donations. Kühne&Nagel, Georgi and orgalog helped with transport services. This project was organized and implemented by HelpAlliance, the charitable aid organization of the Lufthansa Group.
“We are standing by our colleagues and the U.S. population in Puerto Rico during these trying times. It is especially in moments of crisis, that we as an enterprise all pull together and lend support to our colleagues and the local surrounding communities near our Puerto Rico location and affected by this tragedy,” said Dr. Johannes Bussmann, the president of the management board of Lufthansa Technik AG (LLC).
The Lufthansa ‘Technik’ Facility in Puerto Rico (LTPR) was opened in February 2014 in Aguadilla, and has specialized in the service and maintenance of aircraft types, such as the Airbus A320 family. Initial orders came from some of the main U.S. carriers, and this caused the service site to develop rapidly in becoming one of the more important provider for aircraft overhaul for the United States. Additionally, ‘LTPR’ introduced the first training program for the United States Department of Labor in the servicing, maintenance, repair and overhaul of aircraft. The program is being run in conjunction with the Aeronautical and Aerospace Institute of Puerto Rico, a non-profit corporate subsidiary of the University of Puerto Rico.
Signed in June of this year, the apprenticeship program enhances the relationship between the entire Lufthansa Group, the Island and the United States. It serves not only the local aviation industry, but is meant to serve as an example to other parts of the country.
“As a close partner of Puerto Rico, we are not only lending backup support for the workforce of ‘Lufthansa Technik’ and their families locally, but also for the communities in the vicinity, who have been working together with us also closely and with confidence from day one,” stated Dr. Bussmann. Since the inception of the hurricane damage, the location has received assistance from customers of ‘LTPR’: ‘Spirit Airlines’ and ‘jetBlue’, who have their aircraft serviced by the Technical Station. A freight space was immediately made available for minimum relief requirements. “We must really thank our partners and friends of ‘Spirit’ and ‘jetBlue’. It is comforting to know that one can depend on friends during difficult occasions,” said Johannes Bussmann.