By Michael Randall
Published: 2:00 AM - 04/17/13
STEWART AIRPORT — Only Stewart International Airport and one of its five direct competitors were able to get more than four out of every five departing planes airborne on time in February.
Stewart scored an 81.7 percent on-time departure percentage in February, just ahead of Albany International Airport at 81.6 percent, according to the latest figures from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
They were followed by La Guardia at 79.3 percent, Kennedy at 74.7 percent, Newark at 71.8 percent and Westchester County Airport at 71.5 percent.
But Stewart trailed all its competitors with only 67.2 percent of its inbound flights arriving on time — a category over which its crews have less control than over outbound flights.
Albany had the best on-time arrival number with 74 percent, followed by La Guardia at 73.8 percent, Kennedy at 73.2 percent, Newark at 71.3 percent and Westchester at 68.3 percent.
It was a rare month in which Newark did not finish last in either arrivals or departures.
Air carrier-related causes, not weather, were blamed for most of the late-arriving jets coming into Stewart.
Delays caused by maintenance, cleaning, baggage loading and fueling were responsible for almost 15 hours of those delays, with almost 13 more hours blamed on aircraft having arrived late at the airport where the flight began.
Delays of some flights in the latter category could be blamed at least partly on the weather, but the numbers reported to the DOT are not broken down that specifically.
No delays were blamed on extreme weather. However, non-extreme weather was blamed for another five hours and 20 minutes worth of delays among incoming flights.