EVERETT — Alaska Airlines marked the start of Boeing 737 service at Paine Field with a splash Thursday afternoon.
Arriving from Phoenix, Alaska flight 1497 was welcomed with a water salute, a traditional tribute in the aviation world. After the 737 landed, Paine Field airport firefighters directed a cascade of water at the aircraft, creating an arch over the jet.
Until now, Alaska has employed only smaller Embraer jets for service at Paine Field. On March 18, the carrier plans to switch to 737s for service to Las Vegas, too.
The move to a larger aircraft allows the airline to accommodate more passengers on each flight. After passengers disembarked Thursday’s flight, the plane was loaded again for a return to Phoenix.
Since launching commercial passenger service from the two-gate terminal in March 2019, Alaska has only operated Embraer E175 jets, which seat 76 passengers, at the Snohomish County-owned airport.
Alaska’s 737s can seat up to 178 passengers, more than twice the capacity of the Embraer jets. Thursday’s flight was a seven-year-old 737-900 model.
The Seattle-based airline currently serves nine destinations with 12 daily departures from the Paine Field terminal, which was built and is operated by privately owned Propeller Airports.
Janice Podsada: 425-339-3097; email@example.com; Twitter: @JanicePods.
Talk to us
- You can tell us about news and ask us about our journalism by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 425-339-3428.
- If you have an opinion you wish to share for publication, send a letter to the editor to email@example.com or by regular mail to The Daily Herald, Letters, P.O. Box 930, Everett, WA 98206.
- More contact information is here.