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ND airports set November boarding records

GRAND FORKS — Airports in Grand Forks, Fargo and Dickinson set November passenger boarding records, while Williston recorded its best month ever, according to the North Dakota Aeronautics Commission’s latest report.

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Grand Forks International Airport recorded 12,249 boardings in November, a 9.5 percent increase compared to November 2012.

Fargo had 30,199 boardings, an increase of 7 percent.

However, those numbers paled in comparison with Dickinson and Williston.

Dickinson had 4,191 boardings, an increase of 159.2 percent.

Williston had 8,973 boardings, an increase of 82.5 percent.

Three airports in the state had fewer boarding in November.

Devils Lake had 181 boardings, down 27.9 percent. Jamestown had 224 boardings, down 10.8 percent.

Airports in both cities were affected by several flight cancellations by Great Lakes Airlines in October and November. FAA regulations this past summer increased the number of hours of experience required of co-pilots, forcing some smaller airlines to ground their aircraft until their co-pilots could meet the new requirement.

Bismarck also saw fewer passengers, with 19,979 boardings, a decrease of 9.5 percent.

In total, airports throughout the state had 92,661 boardings, an increase of 8.9 percent.

The state also hit a milestone of 1 million boardings a month earlier this year than last, with 1,033,965 as of November, a 10.5 percent increase compared to the same period in 2012.

In the first 11 months of this year, Grand Forks had 133,959 boardings, an increase of 9 percent. Fargo had 362,343, an 8.7 percent increase.

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