County News

U.S. Department of Transportation Terminates EAS Waiver Program at Hagerstown Regional Airport

October 14, 2019

HAGERSTOWN, MD (October 14, 2019) – The United States Department of Transportation announced the termination of the Essential Air Service (EAS) Waiver eligibility for Hagerstown, MD. This termination notice means that daily flights offered by Southern Airways will no longer be serviced under the EAS program at Hagerstown Regional Airport.

Washington County Government's Aviation Counsel has filed a Petition for Review and a Motion for a Stay with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Southern Airways states, “Due to the Department of Transportation’s Order Termination Essential Air Service at Hagerstown Regional Airport, Southern Airways has temporarily suspended ticket sales to and from that city, effective October 19. The termination is based on results from Fiscal Year 2018, when service at the community was recovering from the effects of the National Pilot Shortage. The improved 2019 Fiscal Year results were not considered by the Department when finalizing the termination order.

Hagerstown Regional Airport is seeking an emergency stay from the United States Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. An answer from the court regarding the stay is expected in the coming days.

Should a positive ruling be issued, ticket sales will be immediately restored and the service will continue.

Should the ruling not be favorable, Southern’s scheduled flights to and from Hagerstown will have to be suspended effective October 19, pending future action by the court or Congress. All passengers with tickets for flights after that date will be contacted and offered a full refund."

Southern Airways extends gratitude to passengers for supporting the local airport and are hopeful the Essential Air Service at the Hagerstown Regional Airport will continue.

For additional information, please contact Washington County's Public Relations and Marketing Department at 240-313-2380.