August 21, 2019
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Airports are delaying flights, citing staffing shortages amid shutdown

Frank Franklin II | AP
Frank Franklin II | AP
Passengers stand in line as they wait to pass through a Transportation Security Administration checkpoint at LaGuardia airport Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in New York.

Federal officials temporarily restricted flights Friday into and out of New York’s LaGuardia Airport, another example of the toll the partial government shutdown – in its 35th day – is having on the nation’s airports.

“We have experienced a slight increase in sick leave at two facilities,” a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration said in an emailed statement. “We’ve mitigated the impact by augmenting staffing, rerouting traffic and increasing spacing between aircraft when needed. The results have been minimal impacts to efficiency while maintaining consistent levels of safety in the national airspace system.”

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Travelers were notified of air traffic issues at fly.faa.gov and were advised to check with their airline for more information.

The FAA’s Airport Status Information website cited shortages at two facilities, including one near Washington, which manages air traffic. The temporary restrictions affect arriving and departing flights at the airport. Arriving flights were delayed an average of 41 minutes and departures were experiencing delays between 15 and 29 minutes, the FAA said.

 



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