Yuma International Airport, a shared-use airport together with Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, is located three nautical miles (6 km) south of the central business district of Yuma, a city in Yuma County, Arizona, United States. It is mostly used for military aviation, but is also served by two commercial airlines and one Medevac company.
YUMA MCAS/YUMA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT HISTORY
Yuma’s history of flight dates to 1911 when Robert Fowler took off from Yuma to set a world’s record for endurance and distance. He entered a Transcontinental Air competition sponsored by William Randolph Hearst. Originating in Los Angeles, he arrived in Yuma on October 25. Over 2,000 spectators watched the aircraft circle and make a landing. The next day he succeeded in setting a world’s record.
In 1925, the Yuma Chamber of Commerce went to work to secure an airport for Yuma. After two years of negotiations, 40 acres (16 ha) of land was secured from the federal government. The land was cleared, leveled, and the first hangar constructed. The 40 acres (16 ha) of land was officially designated as an active airport and named Fly Field after Colonel Ben Franklin Fly. In the beginning, Fly Field had limitations, including loose sand and a lack of facilities. In 1925, the Chamber’s Aviation Committee decided another 160 acres (65 ha) was needed to create a first-class landing field in Yuma. Intense negotiations resulted in a public/private land trade, along with a promise by the government to provide Fly Field a steel frame hangar capable of housing 12 airplanes. Congressman Douglas of Arizona introduced a bill asking for the lease of 640 acres (260 ha) of government land to Yuma County for 20 years at a cost of $1 per year, with the privilege of renewal for another 20 years at the same rate. President Calvin Coolidge signed the Yuma Aviation Bill on February 27, 1928. Almost immediately, the aviation committee started lining up activities for the airport. Yuma was selected to be a night stop for three transcontinental air races from New York to Los Angeles, and an international air race from Mexico to Los Angeles. The Chamber agreed to provide free gas and oil to the racers, at an estimated cost of $2,000. Yuma was also selected to be a stop-over for the first All American Tour of 25 Airplanes. In June of that year, the military announced that a United States Meteorological and Aerological station would be constructed at Fly Field at a cost of $30,000 and would be manned by four Army personnel, marking the first military presence at Yuma’s airport.
On April 1, 2011, Southwest Airlines Flight 812 with 118 passengers en route from Phoenix to Sacramento diverted to the airport after a rapid decompression which was the result of a large tear in the plane’s fuselage 40 minutes into the flight. The Boeing 737-300 series aircraft made an emergency landing at the airport (one flight attendant suffered minor injuries during the rapid descent), and a replacement aircraft was sent to the airport to board the passengers and complete the flight to Sacramento.
YUMA MCAS/YUMA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT LOCATION
YUMA MCAS/YUMA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FACTS
Elevation: 216 ft.
Runway length available: 03R/21L 9239×150 ft. :: 03L/21R 13299×200 ft. :: 08/26 6145×150 ft. :: 17/35 5710×150 ft.