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CHINA SOUTHWEST'S FIRST BOEING 757 WILL SERVE TIBET

 CHINA SOUTHWEST'S FIRST BOEING 757 WILL SERVE TIBET
 SEATTLE, Aug. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- China Southwest Airlines has received its first of seven Boeing 757s that will be used to replace older Boeing 707s on the airline's routes to Lhasa, Tibet, home of one of the world's highest-altitude airports, Boeing Commercial Airplane Group said today.
 The planes also will operate to other cities in the airline's route system which includes 32 cities in China plus Hong Kong and Kathmandu, Nepal.
 On March 29 of last year, Boeing and the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) successfully demonstrated that the higher-performance, fuel-efficient Boeing 757 would perfectly suit Lhasa's challenging Gongga Airport. Not only is the airport high -- at 11,621 feet (3,542 meters) it is second only to Bolivia's La Paz airport in the Andes Mountains -- but Gongga also sits in a box canyon. Regulations call for aircraft currently serving Gongga to fly up and over a mountain ridge before circling back to land when an emergency occurs on takeoff. But the 757 proved it could take off on one engine and circle back inside the canyon, thus providing a greatly enhanced safety margin.
 "The demonstration was highly successful," said CAAC Deputy Director Li Zhao at the time. "I wish to offer my congratulations to both Boeing and Rolls-Royce." CAAC's 757s are powered by RB211-535E4 engines.
 China Southwest becomes the 48th airline to operate the popular Boeing 757. Designed to carry 194 passengers in a typical mixed-class configuration, the twinjet can accommodate up to 239 passengers in charter service. It features a state-of-the-art two-crew flight deck, windshear detection and other crew-alerting systems, and a spacious interior with overhead video monitors. Extended-range 757s can fly 4,500 statute miles (7,240 km) nonstop with full passenger payload. In nine years of operation, the worldwide fleet of Boeing 757s has flown the equivalent of about 527 years of continuous service. Of the company's 1,488 commercial jet backlog, 21 percent are for 757 twinjets.
 China Southwest Airlines is headquartered in Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan Province, and will receive five Boeing 757s this year and two next year. (Four of the seven are leased from Guinnes Peat Aviation |GPA~.) In addition, China Aviation Supplies Corp. (CASC) may allocate more of its 13 Boeing 757s on order from Boeing to China Southwest.
 To facilitate increasing numbers of tourists traveling to Tibet, the government just completed a 4,000-meter runway at Gongga Airport and is constructing a new 9,145-square-meter arrival and departure lounge capable of serving 600 passengers at a time.
 -0- 8/10/92
 /CONTACT: David Jensen of Boeing Commercial Airplane Group,


206-237-8051/
 (BA) CO: Boeing Commercial Airplane Group; China Southwest Airlines ST: Washington IN: AIR SU:


SC -- SE006 -- 8583 08/10/92 14:32 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 10, 1992
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