Loganair has stepped in to save more than a dozen routes threatened by the sudden closure of Flybe.

It was revealed this morning that Europe's largest regional airline Flybe had collapsed into administration.

A drop in demand caused by the coronavirus "made a difficult situation worse" for Flybe, an airline source told the PA news agency.

The airline announced in the early hours of Thursday it had ceased trading with immediate effect and that administrators had been appointed.

Glasgow Times:

READ MORE: Flybe in adminstration: Glasgow job fears and flights cancelled after collapse

Crisis talks were held throughout Wednesday to try to secure a rescue package, but no deal was agreed.

Now, Scotland's airline Loganair has announced plans to take up 16 out the routes formerly flown by Flybe.

The airline will be adding nearly 400 new flights each week and has opened a special recruitment line for former Flybe employees seeking to continuing their aviation careers with Loganair.

The routes - from existing Loganair base airports at Glasgow, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Inverness and Newcastle - will be launched progressively over the next four months.

 Flights on the first and largest group of these key air routes will commence as early as Monday 16 March.  

All flights are already on sale at www.loganair.co.uk and via travel agent systems.

Loganair’s Chief Executive Jonathan Hinkles said: “The collapse of a long-standing airline like Flybe marks a desperately sad day, especially for the airline’s dedicated team of employees and for customers facing disruption to their journeys.  

"By stepping in quickly with a comprehensive plan, Loganair is aiming to maintain essential air connectivity within the UK regions to keep customers flying, and to offer new employment to former Flybe staff members who are facing an uncertain future today.”

The Glasgow flights saved are to Exeter and Southampton, with both being launched on March 30.

Customers formerly booked on Flybe services on the same routes will need to make new bookings at www.loganair.co.uk, and obtain a refund via their payment card provider for tickets booked with Flybe.

In common with all other airlines, Loganair has no access to Flybe systems or customer data to be able to facilitate re-bookings.