Sounds Air starts special flights to quake-hit Kaikoura

  • 17/11/2016
A sounds air plane in flight (Facebook/Sounds Air)
A sounds air plane in flight (Facebook/Sounds Air)

Sounds Air has announced it will start flying in and out of Kaikoura five days per week, just days after a devastating earthquake hit the town.

The family-owned business has announced two new routes between Kaikoura, and Blenheim and Christchurch, from November 21.

Sounds Air managing director Andrew Crawford says it was an easy decision to make.

"We were talking about it yesterday as it became apparent how bad the road would be for a long time.

"These people are in trouble, its not just this week and the next. [The damaged road] is a serious hindrance. It's pretty easy for us to fly and it will make a big difference."

While the flights are not permanent, Sounds Air says it will be landing in Picton for a minimum of three weeks.

Mr Crawford says within five hours of announcing the flight, they already had between 30 to 40 bookings.

Fortunately the Kaikoura airstrip is "absolutely fine", but the terminal did suffer a bit of cosmetic damage.

"I haven't been there, but I believe it has a couple of broken windows and not much more," Mr Crawford says.

The company has already flown more than 100 people on charter flights from Kaikoura to Wellington and Christchurch.

Sounds Air will also be delivering around two tonnes of post to Kaikoura on Friday. Mr Crawford said New Zealand Post asked for the delivery to be made because a number of people rely on medical prescriptions in the mail.

The flights will be operating on a varying timetable because the pilots are working around other commitments.

Details of flight times and ticket prices can be found on the Sounds Air website.