American Airlines revealed to The Hill on Monday that the company will stop serving the cities of Toledo, Ohio; Ithaca, New York; and Islip, New York, starting Sept. 7 amid a regional pilot shortage.
”We’re extremely grateful for the care and service our team members provided to our customers in Islip, Ithaca, and Toledo and are working closely with them during this time,” a spokesperson told the outlet. ”We’ll proactively reach out to customers scheduled to travel after this date to offer alternate arrangements.”
According to Fox News, the airline industry is short a whopping 12,000 pilots. In addition, the majority of airports across the country are offering fewer flights.
”While demand is strong, I want to acknowledge we are grappling with a real and worsening pilot shortage that is challenging us across the industry to fully meet demand,” Regional Airline Association CEO Faye Malarkey Black said at an event in Dallas.
Transportation Security Administration ”throughput numbers show passengers from small airports have returned in strong numbers, yet more than 70% of U.S. airports have less service than they did in 2019.”
RAA, which operates 43% of U.S. airline flights, further stated that 188 communities had lost at least 25% of their air service during the COVID-19 pandemic or the first half of 2022.
Data from FlightAware showed that 922 flights into or out of the U.S. were canceled Sunday, with an additional 6,298 delayed. Delta specifically dropped 249 flights, 8% of its entire schedule for the day, the New York Post reported.
”A variety of factors continue to impact our operations, including challenges with air traffic control, weather, and unscheduled absences in some work groups,” Delta said in a statement.
”Canceling a flight is always our last resort, and we sincerely apologize to our customers for the inconvenience to their travel plans.”
The same day, American Airlines canceled 96 of its flights, and United Airlines quashed 92.