Air Traffic Controllers, Pilots, Flight Attendants Issue Scary Warning About Air Safety

26 January, 2019, 01:44 | Author: Sally Reid
  • A TSA agent center directs passengers through a security checkpoint at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. The strain of a 34-day partial government shutdown is weighing on the nation’s air-travel system

Air traffic was being delayed at LaGuardia airport in New York, Philadelphia global airport and Newark Liberty worldwide airport in New Jersey, according to the FAA's website.

"We have experienced a slight increase in sick leave at two facilities", a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement.

Mary Campbell Jenkins said she was aboard a plane Friday on a tarmac in NY when the pilot announced that connecting flight information was limited "due to a ground stop here at LaGuardia due to the government shutdown". Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, said the air safety system would "unravel" and predicted the issue to spread to other airports on Friday morning. "We are mitigating the impact by augmenting staffing, rerouting traffic, and increasing spacing between aircraft when needed".

Martin says safety is being maintained during a period of "minimal impacts" on travel.

The shutdown, which has lasted 35 days, may be coming to an end, for now: President Donald Trump announced Friday afternoon that he has agreed to a plan to fund the government for three weeks, through February 15.

John Hitt, a 51-year-old lawyer based in Boston, had expected to fly to Milwaukee via LaGuardia on Friday morning to visit his terminally ill aunt, but Delta Air Lines (DAL.N) told him his flight was delayed for at least two and a half hours.

This past week, around ten percent of all TSA workers have called in sick - many looking for other jobs to help pay the bills, bills not getting paid since they haven't received a paycheck since December.

Barty can win the Open, says Sharapova
The Russian's astonishing collapse continued with another pair of double-faults which gifted Barty a 4-0 lead in the third set. But it's something that, as I said after my first match, it's a pain-management type of thing.

Update, 3:00 pm ET: On Friday afternoon, U.S. President Donald Trump announced an agreement with U.S. lawmakers, securing three weeks in stop-gap funding to reopen the government.

At LaGuardia, travelers learned of delayed flights from announcements over PA systems. In addition, airlines with hubs in Washington have said they are losing government business as a result of the shutdown.

The government shutdown, the longest in US history, is approaching its sixth week. "They are driving as a taxi on the way home from work, on the way to work, in the hours in between the shifts", said Mick Devine, the New England regional vice-president of the National Air Traffic Controller Association. TSA would not reveal callout rates for individual airports. "It is only going to get much, much worse". "We were already short-handed in all areas".

"We're still showing up, we're doing the best we can", air traffic controller John Murdock told CTV News Channel.

If you are coming to the airport to catch a flight or to pick someone up, you're asked to check the flight status first.

"In this spirit, we urge that the federal government be reopened before shutdown impacts begin to escalate".

On Thursday, JetBlue Airways Corp. "And the longer this goes on, the longer it will take for the air travel infrastructure to rebound".

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