A leading cause of aviation accidents in Alaska is due to rock damage caused by taking off and landing on gravel runways. This article describes how Extension in Alaska planted a demonstration runway with an environmentally appropriate native grass to suppress rock damage to propellers, engines, control surfaces, and airframes. More than 200 runways have taken advantage of the program at an annual savings of 1.5 million dollars. The program has also resulted in national attention for the University of Alaska Fairbanks Mat-Su/Copper River Cooperative Extension Service District.
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Brown, S. C. (2012). Improving Alaskan Aviation Safety with Turf Runways. The Journal of Extension, 50(6), Article 16. https://doi.org/10.34068/joe.50.06.16