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Image credit: British Airways

British Airways pushes planes with remote-controlled vehicles

They're electric, too.
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British Airways

From renewable fuels to eco-friendly airplane tugs -- British Airways is interested in decreasing its ecological footprint. The airline has just announced the roll out of five new Molotok remote-controlled electric vehicles that can push back aircraft from the gate. These eco-friendly vehicles replace the standard diesel tugs that you typically see at airports so that a single ramp agent can push an aircraft out with a little control device worn on their belt. British Airways claims that it is the "first airline worldwide" to implement these tugs.

The five new electric airplane tugs are in operation at 25 gates at Terminal 5 in Heathrow Airport. The Molotoks are able to move planes with more precision than traditional driven vehicles. The Mototok website claims that the electric vehicles can park up to 40 percent more airlines in the same amount of parking space. They hold their charge for up to three days and will be charged at stations at each of the 25 gates at Heathrow.

"British Airways is the most punctual, major short-haul airline in London," said British Airway's COO Klaus Goersch in a statement. "The introduction of the Mototok will help us to stay at the top of the league and keep our flights departing on time. This major step to modernize our operation is a first in the airline industry, and part of wider investment in new technology that will enhance the experience our customers have."

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