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Despite the extraordinary security on the island & unknown to most travelers heading to Hawaii, Johnston was the designated alternative landing site for long-range twin-engine aircraft.
Greg Zieber recalled, "I lived & worked on Johnston Island for 6.5 years, 1994 to mid 2000. There were several times that the runway was used for emergency landings. Small civil aviation type aircraft (Cessna for example), large commercial jet aircraft including a Quantas [sp!] 747, and various military aircraft also used the airfield for bona fide declared emergencies.
The US Army, which operated the chemical weapons destruction facility, said in 2001 that they planned to begin to decommissioning the runway in 2002. That would make it fail to qualify under the "extended-range twin-engine operations" (ETOPS) rules which apply to twin engine airliners such as the 737, 757, 767, 777, MD80/90, A300/310, A319/320/321, and A330.
Originally posted by 4for4
NTS would be extremely well monitored by foreign militaries as well,
but we know testing still occurs there...