bmi regional continues BAe 146 operations


bmi regional BAe 146-200 G-CLHE

Atlantic BAe 146-200 G-CLHE is flying for bmi regional; she is seen here landing at Bruxelles (Daniel Alaerts)

bmi regional (formerly British Midland Commuter) lost its contract to operate five BAe 146-200s on behalf of Lufthansa, but continues to operate the type. All five 146s were expected to be returned to lessors when the Lufthansa contract ended, and three were in fact flown to Exeter for maintenance and storage prior to return to lessors. However, the collapse of SABENA created an opportunity to boost services to Brussels, so one 146 was retained to fly from Manchester to the Belgian capital. Another was retained to cover for maintenance of bmi aircraft. A third, G-CLHE (msn E2045), which had already been returned to Atlantic Airways and repainted in its colors, was leased again to cover for unexpected maintenance to one of the airline’s Embraer ERJ-145s. This latter aircraft will be returned soon; it is unclear how much longer the other two will remain with bmi regional.

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