FAA: Increase in sick leave causing flight delays

Dave Mc Leod tapes off trim as he prepares to paint a wall near a gate in the new passenger terminal at Paine Field in Everett. Alaska Airlines says it will delay the start of commercial passenger service at the new terminal by at least three weeks due

Dave Mc Leod tapes off trim as he prepares to paint a wall near a gate in the new passenger terminal at Paine Field in Everett. Alaska Airlines says it will delay the start of commercial passenger service at the new terminal by at least three weeks due

Flight delays have been reported at several major East Coast airports, including Newark Liberty International, Philadelphia International, and Reagan National in Washington, D.C.

A spokesperson for the FAA confirmed to Gothamist that they have experienced a "slight increase in sick leave at two facilities", which they've mitigated by "augmenting staffing, rerouting traffic, and increasing spacing between aircraft when needed".

Departing flights from Philadelphia and Newark were delayed between an hour and an hour and 15 minutes, and LaGuardia departures delayed between 15 and 30 minutes, the FAA said.

The result was "minimal impacts to efficiency" while maintaining safety, Martin said.

"I can't say exactly why they're absent", Trish Gilbert with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association tells CNN.

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.

In an interview with Splinter published just before the FAA's announcement on Friday, Sara Nelson-the leader of the Association of Flight Attendants who this week called for a general labor strike to end the shutdown-said the US aviation system is "rapidly approaching a breaking point".

Delta said about 200 of its flights were delayed at LaGuardia and other Northeast airports.

The delays and aggravation for voters will escalate the pressure on President Donald Trump and lawmakers to end the government shutdown.

Bloomberg reports that neither the FAA nor the National Air Traffic Controllers union has directly attributed the delays to the shutdown, which is now the longest in history.

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Travelers were advised to check with their airline for more information. "These TSA officers and air traffic controllers are absolute heroes".

A shortage of workers at an air traffic control facility in the Washington DC area prompted the agency to order a ground stop at LaGuardia, one of the country's busiest transportation hubs.

The government shutdown, the longest in USA history, is approaching its sixth week.

They will be paid once the shutdown ends, but in the meantime, many are describing financial hardships, relying on food banks, and worrying whether they can pay the rent or mortgage.

"But doing so while worrying about eviction, the ability to feed themselves and their families, to keep the heat on, to pay bus fare to get to work, puts this safety at risk", he said in his statement.

Air traffic controller staffing nationwide also already had been a key FAA consideration.

"We just continue to watch this very closely, but there's only so much that we can do", Caruso said.

USA lawmakers and the White House faced intensifying pressure Friday to resolve a five-week impasse and reopen government, as the political stalemate has begun to affect the nation's busy airports.

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

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