In defense of the Dash 8 |

In defense of the Dash 8

Dear Editor: In response to Andy Stone’s “To hell and back – on a turboprop” (Aspen Times, Dec. 2), if he’s so unhappy with the Dash 8, he could always drive for three-plus hours from Denver to Aspen (no snow on roads). Air Wisconsin’s Bae Jet would get “blown all over the sky” just as much as the Dash in similar turbulence. Rocky Mountain weather doesn’t care how small or large the aircraft is, you’re going to get bounced, period. He just happened to pick a bad day for a smooth ride. On such a short flight, it makes no sense for an aircraft (jet or turboprop) to climb to a high altitude, and the speed difference of a jet is negligible. We regularly fly at 25,000 feet – that’s not very low in my opinion. Also, can he honestly say 300 mph on the Dash is really too slow for him? Just because an aircraft has props doesn’t mean it is slow. Passengers see the props and automatically and incorrectly think old, slow, unsafe. That’s just general public ignorance. As a side note, most of the Dash 8s were built less then 10 years ago, using the same state-of-the-art technology used on modern jets. As far as Andy’s third-world country experience with Gate 61 is concerned, one must understand that consumers want cheap tickets, resulting in low revenues and razor-thin profit margins for the airline. The only way for airlines to provide these cheap tickets is to cut back on expenses. Naturally, the red carpet treatment has vanished. Flying is now cheaper than it was 20 years ago. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. The airlines are simply providing what the consumers want. I know it’s an abused cliché but, you get what you pay for. You want better service, start paying for it and don’t complain about high ticket prices. Happy landings. Phil LeRoyMesa Air Dash 8 captain