Erik Nielsen Whitehorse Intl

Erik Nielsen Whitehorse International Airport (IATA: YXY, ICAO: CYXY) is located in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada. It is part of the National Airports System, and is operated by the Government of Yukon. The airport was renamed in honour of longtime Yukon Member of Parliament Erik Nielsen on December 15, 2008. The terminal handled 294,000 passengers in 2012, representing a 94% increase in passenger traffic since 2002. Built between 1940 and 1941 by the federal Department of Transport, it was transferred to the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in 1942 as part of the Northwest Staging Route under the name of RCAF Station Whitehorse. It was closed in 1968 and the airfield resumed its status as a civilian airport. The airport is classified as an airport of entry by Nav Canada and is staffed by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). CBSA officers at this airport can handle aircraft with no more than 50 passengers; however, they can handle up to 225 if the aircraft is unloaded in stages. The airport has two fixed-base operators for fuel, limited aircraft maintenance facilities. The control tower operates from 7 a.m. – 9 p.m. local time, and the Whitehorse Flight Service Station provides Airport Advisory Service during the remaining hours. ARFF services are also provided 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In addition to scheduled commercial service, numerous small air charter operators and bush pilots use the airport and it serves as a major base for water bombers used in forest firefighting operations. The airport also controls Whitehorse Water Aerodrome, a float plane base on Schwatka Lake. Whitehorse is a major stopover point for private flyers who make the trip to and from Alaska. During the September 11, 2001 attacks, two aircraft approaching the United States from Asia were diverted to Whitehorse as part of Operation Yellow Ribbon. One of these flights, a Boeing 747 operating as Korean Air Lines Flight 85, was feared to be hijacked; however, this was not the case as the jumbo jet was low on fuel. Many of the buildings in the downtown area near the airport were evacuated as a precaution. Those who witnessed the landing by the Korean Air 747 observed the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) order the flight crew out at gunpoint. The airport's parking lot is graced by an old Canadian Pacific Air Lines Douglas DC-3 on a pedestal that serves as a weather vane. A new addition to the terminal is in the process of being built. It will help alleviate congestion with international flights.

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Whitehorse (total area population 27,889 as of 2013) is the capital and largest city of Yukon and the largest city in northern Canada. It is Yukon's only city. It was incorporated in 1950 and is located at kilometre 1426 on the Alaska Highway in southern Yukon. Whitehorse's downtown and Riverdale areas occupy both shores of the Yukon River, which originates in British Columbia and meets the Bering Sea in Alaska. The city was named after the White Horse Rapids for their resemblance to the mane of a white horse, near Miles Canyon, before the river was dammed. Because of the city's location in the Whitehorse valley, the climate is milder than other comparable northern communities such as Yellowknife. At this latitude winter days are short and summer days have up to about 19 hours of daylight. Whitehorse, as reported by Guinness World Records, is the city with the least air pollution in the world.

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