FAA: Flights delayed at major USA airports due to staffing

FAA: Flights delayed at major USA airports due to staffing”

Air traffic was delayed and flights were halted for a time at some major East Coast airports Friday morning due to shutdown-related staffing shortages, the FAA said.

The LaGuardia delay, which was scheduled to last until 10:45am ET, according to the FAA website, resulted in flights being grounded for an average of 41 minutes.

"We've mitigated the impact by augmenting staffing, rerouting traffic, and increasing spacing between aircraft as needed", the FAA said. Martin said safety is being maintained during a period of "minimal impacts" on travel.

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.

Several flights have been delayed at Pittsburgh International Airport Friday due to the government shutdown.

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Paul Rinaldi, head of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association - which is suing President Trump for freezing worker pay during the funding lapse - told the Washington Post that air traffic controllers already working 10-hour shifts have been forced to take on second jobs as waiters and Uber drivers. However, the FAA hadn't experienced any delays as a result.

U.S. 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.

Democrats in the House are demanding a reopening of the government before any negotiations with Trump and his Republican allies in Congress on border security.

Flights at numerous major USA airports were delayed Friday due to an "increase in sick leave" among air-traffic controllers, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

The Federal Aviation Administration said ground delays remained in effect at La Guardia, the NY region's third-largest airport, while the airport in Atlanta, one of the world's busiest, is at Code Red, with flight delays of one hour. This, Time noted, includes air traffic controllers, TSA agents, safety inspectors, air marshals, and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents.

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"I am glad the government is reopening and 800,000 federal employees are getting paid".

Nearby Newark Airport faced significant delays for the same reason, adding to the nationwide air travel difficulties. "Many controllers have reached the breaking point of exhaustion, stress, and worry caused by this shutdown". Bangor International Airport Director Tony Caruso said that it is hard to predict how the shutdown might eventually affect BIA, a small airport with only a handful of daily flights, but that he and his staff and the federal employees at the facility are taking it one day at a time.

Delta has said it will lose $25 million this month because of the shutdown, which has grounded many federal employees and contractors.

The three union bodies, who help to represent more than 130,000 aviation workers, said major airports were already seeing security checkpoints closing - with more expected in the coming days.

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