Sandakan Airport

Lapangan Terbang Sandakan
Summary
Airport typePublic
OwnerKhazanah Nasional Berhad
OperatorMalaysia Airports Holdings Berhad
ServesSandakan Division, Sabah, East Malaysia
LocationSandakan, Sabah, East Malaysia
Time zoneMST (UTC+08:00)
Elevation AMSL46 ft / 14 m
Coordinates05°54′06″N 118°02′55″E / 5.90167°N 118.04861°E / 5.90167; 118.04861Coordinates: 05°54′06″N 118°02′55″E / 5.90167°N 118.04861°E / 5.90167; 118.04861
Maps
Sabah state in Malaysia

Sabah state in Malaysia
SDK /WBKS is located in Borneo
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS
Location in Sabah State , East Malaysia
SDK /WBKS is located in East Malaysia
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS (East Malaysia)
SDK /WBKS is located in Malaysia
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS (Malaysia)
SDK /WBKS is located in Southeast Asia
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS (Southeast Asia)
SDK /WBKS is located in Asia
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS
SDK /WBKS (Asia)
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
08/26 2,500 8,202 Asphalt
Statistics (2020)
Passenger362,692 (Decrease 66.5%)
Airfreight (tonnes)1,657 (Decrease 34.9%)
Aircraft movements6,034 (Increase 50.5%)
Sources: Official web site[1]
AIP Malaysia[2]

Sandakan Airport (IATA: SDK, ICAO: WBKS) is a domestic airport which serves Sandakan, a town in the east Malaysian state of Sabah. It is located 14 km (8.7 mi)[2] west of downtown Sandakan. In 2005, the airport handled 621,513 passengers and registered 10,876 flights.[1]

History

World War II

The site was selected during World War II for a Royal Air Force (RAF) airfield, but by the time of the Japanese invasion of Borneo, work had not progressed beyond clearing the area of vegetation.[3] After the Fall of Singapore, the Japanese military decided that its aircraft needed a refuelling stop between peninsular Malaya and the Philippines and decided to complete the RAF airfield site.[3] The Japanese Army transferred some 1,500 British and Australian prisoners of war from Singapore to work on the airfield.[3] Commencing in August 1942, the prisoners, along with thousands of Javanese- and local labourers, built the airfield by hand, including a 1,400-metre (4,593 ft) runway, on a site composed of tufa.[4][5] The airfield received its first flight in December 1942, when General Yamawaki Masataka landed in a bomber aircraft and declared the airfield open.[6][7] At various times in 1945, all remaining prisoners of war were evacuated from the vicinity of the airfield, with all but six dying during what became known as the Sandakan Death Marches.

Expansion plan

On 7 May 2017, Prime Minister Najib Razak announced an allocation of RM 80 million for the airport runway extension project.[8] The extension project commenced in 2019, but completion is delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[9][10]

During a meeting with Sabah's Chief Minister Hajiji Noor , Wee Ka Siong the Malaysia Minister of Transport in December 2021 told that the runway extension project will be completed really soon.

As of June 2022 the extended runway has been completed along with the adjacent Taxiway Bravo. Instrument Approach on runway 08 however is still in progress. Approaches are conducted on runway 26 via visual, VOR or RNAV approaches instead.[11]

The new runway length of 2500M(8202feet) allows unrestricted payload take off for narrowbody aircraft like the B737-800, A320, A321. This also allows operations of widebody aircraft like A330 though subjected to either payload or range restrictions.

Airlines and destinations

AirlinesDestinations
AirAsia Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur–International
Malaysia Airlines Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur–International
Malaysia Airlines
operated by MASwings
Kudat, Lahad Datu, Tawau

Traffic and statistics

Annual passenger numbers and aircraft statistics
Year
Passengers
handled
Passenger
% Change
Cargo
(tonnes)
Cargo
% Change
Aircraft
Movements
Aircraft
% Change
2003 497,999 Steady 3,713 Steady 10,588 Steady
2004 574,213 Increase 15.3 4,053 Increase 9.2 10,823 Increase 2.2
2005 621,513 Increase 8.2 4,531 Increase 11.8 11,662 Increase 7.7
2006 633,194 Increase 1.9 5,475 Increase 20.8 10,776 Decrease 7.6
2007 626,192 Decrease 1.1 6,224 Increase 13.7 8,410 Decrease 22.0
2008 618,927 Decrease 1.2 3,055 Decrease 50.9 9,622 Increase 14.4
2009 672,469 Increase 8.6 2,099 Decrease 31.3 12,915 Increase 34.2
2010 741,674 Increase 10.3 2,806 Increase 33.7 13,517 Increase 4.7
2011 788,515 Increase 6.3 2,300 Decrease 18.0 11,715 Decrease 13.3
2012 834,626 Increase 5.8 2,479 Increase 7.8 13,153 Increase 12.3
2013 911,855 Increase 9.3 2,894 Increase 16.7 12,856 Decrease 2.3
2014 900,016 Decrease 1.3 2,497 Decrease 13.7 12,696 Decrease 1.2
2015 853,411 Decrease 5.2 3,147 Increase 26.0 12,705 Increase 0.1
2016 882,811 Increase 3.4 2,389 Decrease 24.1 12,240 Decrease 3.7
2017 896,347 Increase 1.5 2,211 Decrease 7.4 10,859 Decrease 11.3
2018 950,861 Increase 6.1 2,152 Decrease 2.7 11,561 Increase 6.5
2019 1,083,686 Increase 14.0 2,547 Increase 18.3 12,179 Increase 5.3
2020 362,692 Decrease 66.5 1,657 Decrease 34.9 6,034 Decrease 50.5
Source: Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad[12]

Statistics

Busiest Routes Out of Sandakan Airport by Frequency as of October 2019
Rank Destination Frequency
(Weekly)
Airlines
1 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah 53 AirAsia, Malaysia Airlines, Malindo Air
2 Kuala Lumpur 40 AirAsia, Malaysia Airlines, Malindo Air
3 Tawau, Sabah 14 Malaysia Airlines
4 Lahad Datu, Sabah 14 Malaysia Airlines
5 Kudat, Sabah 2 Malaysia Airlines

References

  1. ^ a b Sandakan International Airport, Sabah at Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad
  2. ^ a b WBKS - SANDAKAN at Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia
  3. ^ a b c Silver 2007, p. 61
  4. ^ Silver 2007, p. 64
  5. ^ Silver 2007, p. 67
  6. ^ Silver 2007, p. 69
  7. ^ Silver 2007, pp. 79-80
  8. ^ Govt has allocated RM80m for Sandakan airport runway extension project: Najib
  9. ^ "Sandakan Airport runway extension project takes off".
  10. ^ Tan, Tarrence; Rahim, Rahimy; Carvalho, Martin (5 October 2021). "No construction, upgrade of airports until aviation industry recovers, says Transport Minister". The Star. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  11. ^ "S'kan airport runway extension ready end of year | Daily Express Online - Sabah's Leading News Portal". 21 October 2021.
  12. ^ "Malaysia Airports: Airports Statistics 2020" (PDF). malaysiaairports. 2 April 2021. Retrieved 5 October 2021.