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Cayman Airport’s Long-Standing Beacon Comes Down

19 September 2020

As part of the next phase of continued improvements in operations and safety standards at the Airports, The Cayman Islands Airports Authority (CIAA), which operates the Owen Roberts International Airport (ORIA) and the Charles Kirkconnell International Airport (CKIA), will be removing the Airport’s Non-Directional Beacon (NDB) off Walkers Road this weekend as it is no longer relevant or in use for aircraft navigation purposes.

The Non-Directional Beacon, which stands at 120 feet high, was commissioned in January 2005 and served as a flight navigational aid used by aircraft to navigate to Owen Roberts International Airport. It replaced the Airport’s original beacon that was destroyed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004.

In 2016, the Non-Directional Beacon was switched off and replaced by Satellite-based navigation aids to navigate aircraft. Satellite-based navigation allows for a more efficient use of the airspace within the region, and aircraft can fly a more direct route reducing flight times and fuel consumption.

The Cayman Islands Airports Authority is working in collaboration with the Department of Environment to protect and relocate any wildlife species of birds that have built their nests upon the high beams of the Non-Directional Beacon.

The mast-lowering and dismantling of the Non-Directional Beacon will take place on Sunday, 20 September 2020 to take advantage of minimal pedestrian and traffic levels on the road.

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CONTACT CIAA +1 (345) 943-7070