Who can we believe over airport safety?

WHO do you believe? The Office for Nuclear Regulation claim the introduction of larger commercial aircraft at Lydd pose a risk so small to the nearby Dungeness power station that it can be ignored.

On the other hand, power station operators EDF have said: “The large scale increase in air traffic around the site is “a risk that should be sensibly avoided in the local and wider public interest .”

Even the Office for Nuclear Regulation admits that the Boeing 737s and Airbus 320s, that will fly from Lydd if the airport expansion is approved, have the potential to cause its highest category nuclear accident in the event of a crash.

Now the European Commission has added its voice to the concerns, asking for more information and assurances from the UK government.

There are many issues relating to the airport expansion plans ranging from potential noise disturbance from larger aircraft, whether the surrounding road infrastructure can cope with a large influx of potential passenger and the potential impact on the highly sensitive Romney Marsh and Dungeness Peninsula wildlife areas.

But the elephant in the room surely remains the proximity of a larger airport to a nuclear installation that is just three miles and 60 seconds flight time away.