7 May 2004

Fuel supply hampering flights to Northern Cook Islands

4:32 pm on 7 May 2004

Air Rarotonga's boss, Ewan Smith, has blamed limited fuel supplies for hampering flights to the Northern Group of the Cook Islands.

Several residents of Manihiki and Penrhyn are having difficulty returning home from Rarotonga due to the unavailability of seats and the low number of flights.

The Cook Islands News reports Mr Smith as saying flights to Manihiki are heavily booked through to the middle of June.

He says to improve services to the Northern Group, serious investment is needed to upgrade runways, lighting , improved wharf facilities for fuel tanks and lower fuel costs.