So Many Furloughed Air Traffic Controllers Are Calling in Sick That Major Airports Are Pausing, Delaying Flights
News broke Friday morning that at least some air traffic control workers with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) have called out sick from two east coast air traffic control facilities — a scenario that was expected — as the government shutdown hits its 35th day.
Though an FAA statement released on Twitter described “a slight increase in sick leave” at the two facilities, the staffing shortages were significant enough to temporarily restrict flights in and out of LaGuardia Airport in New York City. Related delays have also been reported at Philadelphia International Airport and Newark International Airport in New Jersey, one of the busiest airports in the country.
— The FAA (@FAANews) January 25, 2019
The Washington Postreports that the two facilities facing staffing problems were air traffic centers in Jacksonville, Florida, and a Washington, DC, center that controls high-altitude air traffic over seven states.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters that the president has been briefed on the staffing shortage, and that the White House is monitoring the situation and is in contact with both the FAA and the Department of Transportation.
Friday’s flight delays come just one day after the unions that represent air traffic control workers at the FAA, commercial airline pilots, and flight attendants warned that the government shutdown could cause disruptions to travel.
In a joint statement released Thursday, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association, Air Line Pilots Association, and Association of Flight Attendants said: “We have a growing concern for the safety and security of our members, our airlines, and the traveling public due to the government shutdown.”
The statement ended with a plea to Congress and the president: “To avoid disruption to our aviation system, we urge Congress and the White House to take all necessary steps to end this shutdown immediately.”
The FAA advises the public to monitor air traffic on the FAA website, and to contact airlines directly if there are any questions about individual flights.
Brit + Co called the Eastern Region press office of the FAA for comment; according to a recorded answering message, there are no workers in office to answer calls because of the lapse in government funding.
(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Fall is right around the corner, and we're getting amped up for our next session of Selfmade, Brit + Co's 10-week interactive startup school. Designed to help you create a new business or grow your existing one, this course is personally led by Brit + Co founder Brit Morin and co-founder Anjelika Temple, and supported by more than a dozen of the top female entrepreneurs, creatives, and investors in the country. Students receive personalized coaching on everything from how to get out of your comfort zone to how to scale your business, and everything in between. And now, thanks to Office Depot, even more of you can join the course!
For the fall session, we're thrilled to team up with Office Depot to grant 200 FREE scholarship seats to the course. Scholarships are open to US residents, focusing on women of color, women from underserved and underrepresented communities, and women in need of support to help them trail-blaze. After all, we firmly believe that your support system is a huge part of how you achieve greatness, and we are here to cheer all of you on.
To nominate yourself or someone you know for a scholarship, head to our nomination form right here. The deadline for scholarship nominations is September 27th — it's time to take the leap!
Beyond the scholarship, Office Depot is all about helping you accomplish more. Whether it be the start phase, growth phase or keep businesses going phase, Office Depot offers a full suite of business solutions, including services and products, to help you work from anywhere, organize and save time and help build your brand.
So what are you waiting for? Take a chance on yourself and get yourself one step closer to truly being selfmade. Learn more about the Selfmade program, apply for a scholarship and prepare to be inspired :)