Fewer people are passing through the gates of Kansas City International Airport as they fly the friendly skies. Information released by the Kansas City Aviation Department indicates about 9.4-Million passengers departed or arrived at KCI in 2003 – a 5.1 percent drop from 2002. That compares to a 2.8 percent decline nationally during the same period. Several reasons are cited for the KCI decline. Among them, the slow-recovering economy and the collapse of Vanguard Airlines, whose demise is still hurting the Airport. The drop in passenger traffic is cause for concern, but it is not as severe as the nearly 15 percent plunge experienced in 2002. Of course, that number reflected a drop resulting from the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001.