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Sagging economy and strong snowstorm blamed for monthly traffic decline

DIA passenger traffic dips in March, but less than in previous month

Passenger traffic at Denver International Airport declined in March, thanks to continuing economic problems and the threat of severe weather that caused airlines to cancel a large number of flights, airport officials said Monday.

DIA reported 4,303,736 passengers in March, a drop of 6.4 percent from the 4,597,347 travelers who used the facility in the same month last year. Officials said the threat of a heavy spring snowstorm caused DIA’s airlines to cancel several hundred flights on March 26/27, accounting for as much as 3 percent of the monthly decline. The March decrease compared with an 8.2 percent dip in passengers in February.

March’s total brought DIA’s year-to-date passenger count to 11,495,033. That was 5.7 percent fewer than the 12,192,537 passengers recorded at the airport through the first three months of 2008.

The number of flight operations at DIA continued to be impacted in March by the airlines’ capacity reductions and the weather. Operations in March totaled 52,467, down 3.5 percent from the same month last year. DIA’s operations total for the first quarter of the year also was down 3.5 percent from the first three months of 2008.

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