Solomon Airlines is preparing to take delivery of the latest aircraft to join the national carrier’s fleet, a 19-seat De Havilland Twin Otter registration H4-SIC which will operate on domestic routes in the Solomon Islands.

The refitted aircraft from Ikhana Aircraft Services is currently en route from California, United States via Honolulu and the Marshall Islands to Solomon Islands. It is scheduled to arrive in Honiara at approximately 11:05am this morning.

Mr Brett Gebers CEO of Solomon Airlines said the addition of the aircraft to the national carrier’s fleet was another step in improving domestic air services in the Solomon Islands and preparing for the future.

“We would like to express our appreciation to the Solomon Islands Government for assistance, which has enabled us to complete the purchase of the new Twin Otter aircraft, a process we started in 2018,” he said.

“The new Twin Otter equipped with an additional 1,500lb take-off and landing weight capability and updated navigation equipment will add greater efficiency to Solomon Airline’s domestic operations.

“It will enable us to move more people and cargo more efficiently in the Solomon Islands, producing better service for our customers and better economies of scale for our business,” Mr Gebers added.

The new Twin Otter will enter service following registration, induction procedures, and training being undertaken by Solomon Airlines, with its first flight yet to be confirmed.

Solomon Airlines has also completed heavy maintenance work and refurbishment of the airline’s two other De Havilland Twin Otters, registered H4-NNP and H4-OTA.

Solomon Airlines also operates a De Havilland Dash 8-100 aircraft on domestic routes and an Airbus A320 on international routes.