Monday, April 22, 2013

Massive Airline Delays Ahead: LAX, JFK, LGA, ORD, PHL, SFO, FLL...

It's all politics and a from of the Washington Monument Syndrome, i.e., let the people feel the pain of cuts in government spending. This would never occur in the private sector. It's time to get the government out of flight control and turn it over to the private sector: That is, total private sector operated flight control, not a phony government controlled sector asking for bids.

Government budget cuts that kicked in last month are forcing the FAA and other agencies to cut their spending. FAA officials have said they have no choice but to furlough all 47,000 agency employees, including nearly 15,000 controllers. Each employee will lose one day of work every other week. The FAA has said that planes will have to take off and land less frequently, so as not to overload the remaining controllers on duty.
Friday, airline trade groups and the country's biggest pilots union sued the FAA to try to stop the furloughs. They predicted that the furloughs would delay or cancel flights for as many as one out of every three airline passengers across the country. Airlines have also directed their customers to tell the FAA to find other ways to cut costs.
From CBS:
Work furloughs involving air traffic controllers caused headaches around the nation for passengers Sunday.

Flights were delayed in many large hubs — up to three hours for some passengers.

LAX was also affected. The FAA’s website reported a “traffic management program” at LAX is causing “some arriving flights to be delayed an average of 3 hours and 7 minutes.

Delta Airlines put the following statement on their website:

On behalf of our customers and employees, Delta is disappointed that furloughs of Federal Aviation Administration personnel will result in delays and cancellations across the national air transportation system. The FAA has advised Delta that furlough-driven delays are most likely to occur at the following 10 airports:

New York-LaGuardia
New York-JFK
Newark Liberty
Fort Lauderdale
Chicago O'Hare
Chicago Midway
San Francisco
Los Angeles (LAX)
San Diego

Delta will continue to do everything possible to mitigate these delays for our customers. As always, we encourage customers to check their flight status at or on the Fly Delta app before arriving at the airport.

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