Finnair suspends flights to Tartu for a month

image credit: Finnair

Finnair will suspend its daily flights to Tartu, Estonia, from April 29 to May 31, so that an alternative approach solution that doesn’t require a GPS signal can be put in place at Tartu Airport.

The approach methods currently used at Tartu Airport are based on a GPS signal.

GPS interference, which is quite common in the area, affects the usability of this approach method and can therefore prevent the aircraft from approaching and landing.

Last week, two Finnair flights had to divert back to Helsinki after GPS interference prevented the approach to Tartu.

Customers who have booked flights between Helsinki and Tartu on 29.4.-31.5. will receive a cancellation message from Finnair and will be given more information of their options by text message and/or email.

Finnair is the only airline operating international flights to Tartu.

Jari Paajanen, Finnair’s Director of Operations says: “We apologize for the inconvenience the suspension causes to our customers.

“Flight safety is always our top priority, and as the approach to Tartu currently requires a GPS signal, we cannot fly there in the event of GPS interference.

“The systems on Finnair’s aircraft detect GPS interference, our pilots are well aware of the issue, and the aircraft have other navigation systems that can be used when the GPS system is unserviceable.

“Most airports use alternative approach methods, but some airports, such as Tartu, only use methods that require a GPS signal to support them.

“The GPS interference in Tartu forces us to suspend flights until alternative solutions have been established.”