It was reported from one of the Malaysian newsagency that MAS might restart the KUL-NYC route once it's safety is reassured. I don't get the point when so many airlines fly into NYC and yet they are safe, although the are the only ones who fly via DXB. I still think they should fly via Europe like AMS or FRA for their flights into JFK and not EWR. There's not many passengers traveling on the Middle East-USA route, given the current condition though!
Here's the press release:
MALAYSIAN Airline System Bhd (MAS) will resume its Kuala Lumpur-New York (Newark) services only after it is fully assured of the safety of the route, says MAS senior general manager for flight operations Captain Mohd Nawawi Awang. Currently, he said, there are “too many uncertainties” in the travel industry which prevent the carrier from resuming the thrice weekly flights to New York.
“However, we are evaluating the situation. When we are fully assured, we will resume the flights,” he told reporters after a briefing on the carrier’s recent polar express flight at MAS Academy in Kelana Jaya yesterday. MAS suspended its services to New York, via Dubai, after the September 11 terrorist attacks on the US. The national carrier, however, still flies daily to Los Angeles. MAS recently activated its contingency plan, rerouting Europe- and West Asia-bound flights to southern India, 750 miles away from Afghan airspace, to maintain a safe distance from the zone of current military operations.
MAS held a briefing yesterday to highlight its historic journey from Seattle to Kuala Lumpur on Polar Route 2, which spans Canada, the North Pole, Russia and Mongolia. The polar routes were officially opened on February 1 and MAS became the first Asian airline to fly a twin-engine commercial aircraft on one of the four new routes. Mohd Nawawi said the opportunity to fly the polar route came when MAS took delivery of its 13th B777 from Boeing recently. The aircraft left Seattle on April 25 and arrived at the KL International Airport in Sepang the next day, carrying 46 passengers, including MAS managing director Datuk Mohd Nor Yusof.
"It took MAS three months to prepare for the journey. It also resulted in a new air services agreement between Malaysia and Russia which was signed on January 16," Mohd Nawawi said.He did not discount the possibility of MAS flying the route commercially in future, as it will shorten flight time and distance between cities in North America and Asia, as well as reduce fuel costs. “The Seattle-to-Kuala Lumpur flight via the polar route took 18 hours and 2 minutes compared to 20 hours on a normal flight.”