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Late Departures on European Flights

June 23, 1996

For European airlines, punctuality is becoming harder to achieve. According to the Assn. of European Airlines, which keeps tabs on 25 major European-based carriers, 1995 was "a bleak year for punctuality" on short- and medium-haul flights (generally flights under two hours) on the Continent, and 1996 statistics indicate that the trend is continuing. Last year, about 18% of all departures were delayed more than 15 minutes, a worse record than that of the previous year. In most cases, the problems were attributed to airports and air traffic control, Business Traveler magazine reported. Also, the closing of former Yugoslav air space has required the rerouting of air traffic from Europe to the Middle East, Far East, Greece and Turkey.

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