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KLM Boeing 747 Returns To St. Maarten–This Time With Zero Fanfare

Photo: KLM Twitter Feed

KLM’s Boeing 747-400 Queen of the Skies returned to St. Maarten Princess Juliana Airport this weekend for a series of relief flights.  The Boeing 747-400 combi flights departed out of Curacao carrying relief supplies, support personnel, and cargo. The aircraft will return to Schiphol on Tuesday after a series of flights.

According to a translations of KLM’s blog, here are the details about the flights that they shared to media on September 15th:

Today, a KLM Boeing 747 departed from Schiphol to Saint Maarten to evacuate the needy, tourists of all nationalities and other people who do not live on the affected island. It is the first KLM flight on Sint Maarten since the hurricane broke out. On Tuesday, 19 September, KLM Boeing 747 returns to Schiphol with picked passengers.

The Boeing 747-400 with flight number KL737 will arrive on Curaçao on Friday night. KLM first flies to Curacao to pick up staff and resources. On Saturday the aircraft flies with capacity for 268 passengers to Sint Maarten. From there, people are evacuated to Aruba. Partly thanks to the voluntary use of cabin and cockpit staff, this flight has been achieved.

<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”nl” dir=”ltr”>KLM Boeing 747 zojuist succesvol geland op Sint Maarten om passagiers op te halen. <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/klm?src=hash”>#klm</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/sintmaarten?src=hash”>#sintmaarten</a> <a href=”https://t.co/z8fTEuIY8j”>pic.twitter.com/z8fTEuIY8j</a></p>&mdash; KLM Newsroom (@KLM_press) <a href=”https://twitter.com/KLM_press/status/909034511995998208″>September 16, 2017</a></blockquote>
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As a site for avgeeks, we love to report on aviation firsts, unusual flights, and new feats. We reported on KLM ending 747 flight to SXM last October. It feels like a parallel universe to report on the return of a KLM 747-400 to SXM (St. Maarten) and not see our staff jumping with excitement.  But the devastation of St. Maarten by Hurricane Irma has changed the equation.  Maho Beach is gone. The island is seriously devastated and the airport is closed to any scheduled commercial flights for at least the next week.  It’ll be years before St. Maarten is back to any semblance of normal. Now a second hurricane, Maria, has St. Maarten and the Caribbean in its sights. We’re rooting for you St. Maarten. We’re glad that great airlines like KLM are pitching in to help the people of St. Maarten get back on their feet.

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