The air traffic control tower at St. Louis Regional Airport was recognized at a recent airport board meeting for having received the Midwest Air Traffic Control Tower Facility of the Year Award for outstanding service and excellent performance. The award, which honored their statistics from last year, was presented earlier this year.
“While there have been no errors by controllers at this tower in over 10 years, this award is not really about us,” Tower Manager Joseph Case said. “This award is about the fact that the airport staff, West Star Aviation, the EAA and the tenants work together and put safety first.”
He said the working relationship between the tower and the airport staff is exemplary. Besides regularly attending formal meetings, Case and his team often join the airport crew for lunch at the High Flyers Grille next to the tower, where they can relax and talk about issues.
The tower at St. Louis Regional Airport is one of 93 operated by Midwest Air Traffic Control. It is one of the first towers the company started managing when it contracted with the FAA in 1994. The company recognized them this past year as the best facility in the region that includes Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin.
In addition to safety, the team was recognized for exceptional community service. In 2018, they gave about $14,000 to local charities, including their churches. They supported Operation Blessing, Restore Network, foster care services, volunteered as tutors and supported the Experimental Aircraft Association Young Eagles events.
“They go above and beyond the call of duty to coordinate the fly-in and other community activities here at the airport,” Director of Aviation David C. Miller said. “It is wonderful their safety record and their ongoing service to the community has been recognized.”
Besides coordinating activity in the air, the tower has to work with airport crews to maintain the runways. While the tower is only staffed from 7 a.m.-10 p.m., St. Louis Regional is open to traffic 24 hours per day, year-round. That means coordinating snow removal, mowing, repairs to lights and other maintenance functions with the traffic pattern.
Being the only metro area airport completely above the flood plain, both teams also keep emergency preparedness in mind and often participate in disaster drills and community safety events. No matter what the weather, the crew gets to the tower to bring the planes in safely.
Midwest ATC noted the tower crew was recognized for the obvious pride they had in the facility and the work they put in to maintain it.
“The bottom line is that safety is at the forefront of everything done here at St. Louis Regional,” Case said. “At the end of the day, we all want everyone home with their families.”
Article Courtesy Advantage News