It’s happened. Flights at LaGuardia Airport have been halted by air traffic controllers due a staff shortage.
One of the busiest airports in the country, LGA is facing many delays as a result of safety concerns. There are currently not enough air traffic controllers available to land all planes safely and efficiently. With that said, the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA President, Sara Nelson, released a statement on January 25 that reads:
“This is exactly what AFA and other aviation unions have been warning would happen. The aviation system depends on the safety professionals who make it run. They have been doing unbelievably heroic work even as they are betrayed by the government that employs them. They are fatigued, worried, and distracted – but they won’t risk our safety. So the planes will stay on the ground. This is anything but a sick out – it is only about our safety and the air traffic controllers’ absolute commitment to it.
Do we have your attention now, Leader McConnell? All lawmakers? Open the government and then get back to the business of democracy to discuss whatever issue you so choose. This shutdown must end immediately. Our country’s entire economy is on the line.”
According to the FAA system, as of 2 p.m. (and according to other reports since 11 a.m.) arriving flights are still being delayed an average of 1 hour and 26 minutes.
⚠️ #LGA Flight Activity Update
Some flights are still experiencing delays –
🛬 Arrivals = avg of 1 hr 26min
🛫 Departures = avg of 50min
✈ Airborne = avg of 1hr 12min
Please follow our feed for updates & confirm flight status with your airline before going to #LaGuardia.
— LaGuardia Airport (@LGAairport) January 25, 2019
In response to one angry traveler dealing with delays and cancellations on Delta flights, the company swiftly responded with the announcement:
“As of Friday morning, Delta is experiencing about 200 flight delays at New York’s LaGuardia Airport as well as other airports in the Northeast region due to the FAA’s Ground Delay Program. *HPC”
Travelers across airlines are experiencing long delays and even cancellations due to this significant staffing issue. If you’re expecting to travel either to or from LGA soon, be sure to check your flight status before heading out.
featured image source: Shawn from Airdrie, Canada [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons