MIAMI – Since Friday, American Airlines (AA) has canceled almost 1,500 flights due to weather concerns and manpower shortages that began last week. According to flight-tracking website FlightAware, AA canceled another 634 flights today.
According to CNBC, AA’s COO David Seymour blamed the delays on poor weather conditions surrounding Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), the airline’s hub of operations, which had dispersed employees across the country.
“With additional weather throughout the system, our staffing begins to run tight as crew members end up out of their regular flight sequences,” the airline said in the statement.
As demand for air travel rises throughout the holiday season, AA said that 1,800 flight attendants would return from leave on Nov. 1 in preparation for the holiday travel season, with more than 600 freshly hired flight attendants scheduled to join the company by the end of December, digitaljournal.com reports.
Looming Staff Shortages in the US
Staffing woes are not an AA issue alone. Southwest Airlines (WN) also said it was aggressively hiring, with a goal of 5,000 additional employees by the end of the year. SouWNthwest had an operational collapse one weekend in October, causing over 2,000 flights to be canceled over the first weekend of the month.
According to CNN Business, Southwest blamed the move on air traffic control issues and restricted staffing in Florida, as well as adverse weather, claiming that resuming normal operations was more difficult and lengthy due to scheduling and staffing restrictions enacted during the pandemic.
Featured Image: American Airlines A319-100 N821AW. Photo: Tony Bordelais/Airways