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Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport Prepares for Winter Weather

December 15, 2022

Click here for image gallery of airport snow removal equipment and new facility.

More than $10 million invested towards snow fighting operations

The Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) is always open, even during harsh winter weather conditions. Ranked no. 6 in the world – and third in North America – for busiest cargo airports, its essential the airport team is prepared to handle whatever Old Man Winter throws at Kentuckiana.

As part of these preparations, the Louisville Regional Airport Authority continues its investment with more than $10 million spent in recent years towards its snow-fighting operations. This includes nearly $6 million towards seven new MB2 multi-function snow removal vehicles – the best in class in airport snow fighting and $4.2 million for a new facility to house them.

“We are consistently a leader on the global stage for cargo operations,” said Dan Mann, Executive Director of the Airport Authority. “Lifesaving cargo comes and goes on our runways every day and because of this, it’s crucial we are always open for business. This investment demonstrates our commitment to our cargo and airline partners that we’re always prepared, no matter the weather conditions outside.”

With 12 dual-door storage bays, the new facility spans 18,048 square feet and will eventually hold a total of nine MB2 multi-use vehicles and three snow blowers, with the possibility of additional equipment as space allows. It also provides a full wash area for the massive equipment used on the airfield to clear runways and taxiways. Construction for the new facility was completed by Wehr Constructors, Inc.

The state-of-the-art MB2 multi-use vehicles are industry leaders when it comes to snow fighting. A single operator can control the 24-foot plow, 22-foot broom and 400 mph air blast system, reducing time spent clearing snow on runways and taxiways by more than 50%. These added efficiencies mean more commercial and cargo aircraft can take off and land on-time during snow events at SDF. The Airport Authority will augment its already vast snow fleet of plows, brooms and blowers with two additional vehicles in the coming years.

The seven MB2 snow vehicles compliment a robust fleet of more than 35 various pieces of equipment used in SDF’s winter weather efforts. There are more than 17 miles of taxiways and runways, ranging from 75 to 150-feet wide and 10 miles of airfield roadway the SDF team clears during winter weather events.

Click here for Louisville’s Airports 2022-2023 Winter Operations Fact Sheet.