Silverstone Air has suspended operations on three of its routes including Nairobi-Homa Bay, Nairobi-Wajir and Nairobi-Lodwar following below par performance in the routes.
Homa Bay Route was launched two months ago, but has been unable to break even following stiff competition and online attack following a number of accidents that have hit the local airline.
“The temporary suspension of scheduled flights on these routes is purely a business decision. However, the chartered services on these routes are still active. Maasai Mara is a seasonal route, thus scheduled flights occur during peak seasons,” Silverstone told Business Daily.
The Nairobi-Wajir route was launched in June while the Nairobi-Maasai Mara route was started in July with daily return flights.
The airline is facing a hard time convincing customers, with the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCCA) launching a probe into recent air incidents and an accident involving the company’s planes.
In late October, a plane operated by the local carrier crash-landed after losing one of its wheels.
The aircraft, a Dash 8 300, with registration number 5Y-NOP was headed to Nairobi from Lodwar when one of its tyres fell off during take-off forcing the pilot to crash-land at Eldoret International Airport in Uasin Gishu County.
The incident happened just hours after another Silverstone’s aircraft hit and damaged another plane at the Wilson Aiport in Nairobi.
“The investigations are being conducted by the Air Accident Investigation Department (ARID) of the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Public Works,” said KCAA.
In a separate incident in October, a plane operated by the carrier skidded off the runway and crashed shortly after take-off leaving at least nine passengers with injuries.
The aircraft that was headed to Lamu crashed shortly after takeoff due to overloading and disregard to the safety regulations at the airport.
Silverstone Air operates in six locations in Kenya: Mombasa, Kisumu, Malindi, Ukunda, Lamu and Lodwar, and the suspension leaves it with three now.
The airline faces competition from other airlines that operate locally such as Kenya Airways, Jambojet, Fly540, SafariLink, JetLink Express, Mombasa Air Safaris, Africa Express Airways, Airkenya Express, 748 Air Services and African Safari Airways.