New airline set to take off
A NEW charter airline is set to take off from Maryborough airport, offering services all over the country.
Peter Henderson and Robert Milne are the men behind South Pacific Airways, which is targeting fly-in fly-out workers, medical workers and local businesses.
After getting his first pilot's licence in 1968, Mr Henderson entered the industry doing charter flights to oil rigs and went on to develop a career spanning more than 30 years before he decided to start his own company.
He moved to the region last year to start the business, choosing the Fraser Coast region for its base because he believes it is about to boom.
"The Maryborough area has a lot of potential, it just needs time to develop," Mr Henderson said.
"With the potential for government departments and mining in the area, it's all going ahead."
He and his business partner Mr Milne, who is from Maryborough, have more than 40,000 flying hours between them and have previously flown for Sunstate Airlines which later became QantasLink.
South Pacific Airways specialises in trips to outback Australia, but will fly anywhere in the country in their six-seat PA-31 twin-engine Piper Navajo that can carry five passengers and the pilot.
The plane can travel at more than 200 knots, with an endurance of up to five hours between stops.
"These planes can pretty much go anywhere," Mr Henderson said.
"We will be doing ad hoc charter flights from the Maryborough Airport to wherever people want to go."