Philippe Touwaide, the federal government ombudsman for Brussels Airport, spoke during a meeting organised in Waterloo yesterday (Monday). The purpose of this was to talk with residents about planes flying over the area when landing at the airport’s runway 01. Philippe Touwaide clearly indicated that the choice of operational runways at Brussels airport has nothing to do with aeronautical criteria, but solely political and local community criteria.
Touwaide stated that the incident which took place on October 5th, which was subject to an audit, illustrates the fact that, on that particular day, there was nothing to justify using runway 01.
The federal government ombudsman for Brussels Airport detailed to the residents of Waterloo,“We should not deceive ourselves: the issue of planes flying over the area around Brussels Airport, procedures, wind standards and the use of given runways is – albeit the only example in the world – a matter which is purely political, regional and community-based in Brussels. The choice of runways at Brussels Airport is made on the basis of criteria which are no longer aeronautical, but solely with the aim of avoiding flying over one commune or another (…).”
He went on, “Observers from both Belgocontrol (the air navigation and traffic service provider) and Brussels Airport, are here today to relay any of my proposals to the Minister, and to ask for my redundancy, which flies in the face of both the principles of my autonomy and operational independence.”