HARS billed $18k for runway damage

The Connie, the last flying Lockheed Super Constellation in the world.

The Connie, the last flying Lockheed Super Constellation in the world.

Shellharbour City Council has sent the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society a bill for $18,000 for damage caused to the Illawarra Regional Airport runway by its Super Constellation aircraft.

The damage occurred during this year's wind-affected Wings Over Illawarra event.

A report to be presented to Shellharbour councillors on Tuesday night explains that on the day of the event, May 4, organisers decided to "tug" aircraft over to the western end of the east-west runway to limit the impact of noise on the temporary communications tower and visitors.

At 8am the Super Constellation, known as "Connie", was tugged onto the east-west runway and across the intersection of the two runways.

About 30 metres from the north-south runway strip edge, Connie broke through the runway surface and became stuck in the pavement.

A decision was made to leave the plane where it was for the remainder of the show.

At the conclusion of the show retrieval works began which included removing fuel from the plane, building a ramp and then towing the plane.

The society has forwarded the council's claim for $18,329.17 to its insurer.

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