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Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport Prepares for Winter Weather

December 2, 2021

No. 5 Busiest Cargo Airport in the World is Ready for Mother Nature

The Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) is always open, even during the harshest winter weather conditions. With on-going investment in its snow and ice fighting fleet, the airport continues its commitment to being prepared for Mother Nature’s winter weather impacts.

“As home of UPS Worldport, SDF is the no. 5 busiest cargo airport in the world and a major economic driver in the region. It’s crucial our airfield is always open and operating safely,” said Dan Mann, Executive Director of the Louisville Regional Airport Authority. “To ensure that we’re meeting the needs of our cargo and passenger airline partners, we’re investing millions in new equipment and a new storage facility so we can always be prepared.”

Over the past two years, the airport has invested nearly $8 million in its snow fighting operations – with more investment to come. To date, more than $4.1 million was spent towards five new MB2 multi-function snow removal vehicles – the ultimate in airport snow fighting equipment. Plus, nearly $4 million in a new storage facility for the MB2 vehicles.

The state-of-the-art MB2 multi-use vehicles are ready to battle whatever winter weather may come. 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 four more similar vehicles over the next several years.

“Snow is not our favorite word at SDF,” added Mann. “But when it’s on the way, I’m confident we’re prepared to handle it and ensure our airline partners can get to where they need to go.”

The new MB snow vehicles will compliment a robust fleet of more than 30 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 to view Louisville’s Airports 2021-2022 Winter Operations Fact Sheet.

Click here for photo gallery of snow and winter weather equipment.