This post may refer to COVID-19
To access official information about the coronavirus, access CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Over one-third of all flights at LaGuardia Airport canceled Thursday
More than one-third of all flights at LaGuardia Airport and over a quarter of flights at Newark Airport were canceled Thursday in one of the worst travel days yet this summer.
The huge percentage of flight cancellations, cited by tracking service FlightAware, were due in part to the chance of storms late in the day.
However, the travel chaos was not limited to New York City-area airports, with more than 1,500 flights canceled on Thursday across the country as the peak summer travel season gets underway.
The travel woes continued into Friday morning when 67 flights departing LaGuardia Airport were canceled. Newark Airport canceled 70 of its outbound flights as of 5 a.m, according to FlightAware.
Staffing shortages, especially a lack of pilots, are to blame for the nationwide travel headaches, according to industry insiders.
Thursday’s cancellations came after 2,800 flights were scrubbed in the US during a five-day stretch around Memorial Day weekend.
Unions representing pilots at Delta, American and Southwest Airlines said the companies have been too slow to replace pilots who retired or took leaves of absence during the pandemic.
Airlines have also placed the blame on poor weather conditions and the Federal Aviation Administration, which manages the country’s airspace and air-traffic control centers, which are also struggling with staffing issues.
Thursday’s cancellations happened as airline CEOs met with US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg in a virtual meeting to discuss concerns over airport bottle-necks and frustrated travelers this summer.
“I let them know that this is a moment when we are really counting on them to deliver reliably for the traveling public,” Buttigieg told NBC News.