Irregular Operations

Emergency Contingency Plan

The Duluth Airport Authority (DAA) has prepared this Emergency Contingency Plan pursuant to 49 U,S,C, § 42301 on behalf of the Duluth International Airport: a commercial airport. Questions regarding this plan can be directed to Mark Papko, Director of Operations, at

Tarmac Delay Contingency Plan

This plan describes how, following excessive tarmac delays and to the extent practicable, the Duluth International Airport will:

  • Provide for the deplanement of passengers
  • Provide for the sharing of facilities and make gates available at the airport
  • Provide for a sterile area of facilities following excessive tarmac delays for passengers who have not yet cleared United States Customs & Border Protection (CBP)

Airport Information

Name of Airport: Duluth International Airport
Name and title of person preparing the plan: Mark Papko, Operations Director
Preparer contact number: (218) 625-7767
Preparer contact e-mail:
Date of submission of plan: 6/9/22
Airport Category: Non Hub

Contact Information

In the event of diversion or other irregular operations events, aircraft operators should contact Duluth Airport Authority at (218) 727-2968, Monaco Air Duluth (FBO) at (218) 727-2911, or Unifi at (218) 726-4010.

Plan to Provide for the Deplanement of Passengers Following Excessive Tarmac Delays

The Duluth Airport Authority does not operate any of the equipment needed to safely deplane passengers from air carrier aircraft and is, therefore, unable on its own to provide for the deplanement of passengers. Additionally, airport operations personnel are not trained to assist in the deplanement of passengers using equipment owned or operated by air carriers or contract service providers. However, the Duluth Airport Authority will provide a list of service providers who may have the necessary equipment and personnel to safely deplane passengers.

The Duluth Airport Authority will coordinate, with Air Traffic Control (ATC), ground handler(s), and aircraft operator, a plan for the deplanement of passengers. Deplanement of passengers will be facilitated by a designated ground handling service provider.

Passengers will deplane into the main passenger terminal building where we have a choice to keep them in the sterile gate area where there are bathrooms, water fountains, vending machines, and a bar and café which are open during normal hours.  If necessary, TSA will be contacted at (218) 727-7430 so they can be available to screen the passengers for re-boarding. In the case of an expected long stay in the airport terminal the owner of the Arrowhead Tap House will be contacted at (404) 373-4007 to ensure resources available.

Plan to Provide for the Sharing of Facilities and Make Gates Available in an Emergency

Gates 1 through 4 at Duluth International Airport are under common use leases to air carriers and are likely candidates for emergency deplaning. We will direct our common use tenant air carriers to make gates and other facilities available to an aircraft seeking to deplane at a gate to the maximum extent practicable.  The maximum occupancy for the secured boarding area is limited to a maximum occupancy of 600 persons, 150 for each gate area. The airport also has a large non-sterile area besides the gate areas that could be used for holding 127 additional passengers should the need arise.

Plan to Provide a Sterile Area for Passengers Who Have Not Cleared United States Customs and Border Protection

The aircraft operator, airline station manager or authorized agent will be responsible for working with CBP, TSA, Airport Security, and Airport Authority to utilize the CBP sterile area. CBP will be contacted at (218) 720-5203. CBP can then allow access into the Federal Inspection Station (FIS) facility at the Duluth International Airport where the deplaning of passengers will take place. Passengers will be secured in the FIS area, which can accommodate up to 300 persons with limited seating and restroom facilities available. Vending is available in the FIS area, and arrangements can be made to bring in additional food and beverages into the area in extenuating circumstances.

Public Access to the Emergency Contingency Plan

Duluth International Airport will provide public access to its emergency contingency plan through both of the following means: