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Gillette airport traffic slow through first three quarters

GILLETTE (WNE) — Through the first nine months of the year, passenger traffic at the Gillette-Campbell County Airport is down 11 percent from 2017.

Through September, 41,940 passengers have come through the airport, down from the 46,711 through three quarters of 2017. It’s also lagging behind 2016, which saw 44,148 passengers at the same point.

In September, there were 4,099 passengers, the lowest monthly mark since February. Airport Director Jay Lundell said this is directly due to SkyWest pulling Gillette’s third daily flight to Denver.

In August, SkyWest pulled the early evening flight to Denver, bringing Gillette down to two flights a day. It also pulled one of Saturday’s flights, leaving the airport with just one on that day.

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SkyWest recently added that flight back, however.

Lundell said the flight that SkyWest pulled was a good inbound flight, but the outbound one was lagging. On average, that flight was 35 percent full.

Despite the decrease in traffic, people are still filling planes, he said. In July, flights were 80 percent full. August had an average load factor of 77 percent and September was in the high 60s.

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