Eastern Kentucky's only commercial airline being grounded after slow take off

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PIKEVILLE, Kentucky — Less than a year after taking off, eastern Kentucky's only commercial airline is being been grounded.

WYMT-TV (http://bit.ly/1S43dZA) reports Appalachian Air will stop offering flights from Pikeville to Nashville, Tennessee, beginning next month, due to a lack of passengers. Appalachian Air spokesman Luke Schmidt said the move was disappointing, but prudent due to the sluggish economy.

The airline began offering service in October. Schmidt said the last flight would be in July, but didn't announce an exact date.

Officials said in March that ridership had been lower than projected. At the time, consultants said the airline had attracted less than half the expected passengers in the months of December, January and February.

Officials had said they hoped commercial air service would help boost the region's economy.

Information from: WYMT-TV, http://www.wkyt.com/wymtnews

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